Over the past few months, something of a feud has developed between me and Reddit, one of the largest, most-insane hive minds on the internet. Alright, Reddit, let's talk it out.
Here is an Ask me Anything thread where I'll be answering questions from Reddit users and anyone else who can figure out how to navigate Reddit's interface, which I think is purposely unintuitive to scare away non-geeks. Maybe we can come to an understanding, end this hurtful time.
Some background: This whole thing started, as things usually do on the internet, with a dumb tweet. Last spring, a Reddit user going by the name Lucidending tricked the community into believing he had 36 hours to live, and that he was going to spend a few of those hours answering questions in a Reddit thread. He was obviously a fraud, but his bullshit cliche answers were fawned over nonetheless; songs were made in his honor. After it emerged Lucidening was a hoax, I joked on Twitter that I had been behind it. The Reddit hive mind took my tweet seriously, raged against me, then raged some more when I explained it was a joke.
I've said before that the Reddit hive mind scrambles from one dumb outrage to the next, but in my case they've been able to hold a grudge remarkably well. Reddit hates Gawker so much these days they'll regularly post a screenshot of a Gawker item instead of linking to it, so we don't get any pageviews from the content they're ripping off. (I'm sure Gawker's coverage of Reddit's child porn problem, racism and sexism, and mob mentality didn't help.) A couple weeks ago, I made a one-line joke about how Reddit isn't a Shining Temple of All Things Good, and it rocketed to the front page, along with dozens of comments about what a shithead I am. Hate mail filled my inbox; some enterprising dudes even bugged me on AIM.
But maybe some dialogue can help this situation. (In fact, I'm supposed to have a beer with Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian one of these days.) After all, Gawker and Reddit aren't so different: Cats are a large source of traffic for both of us.
So, let's chat. About Gawker, Reddit, the Internet, cats—whatever! I have been deputized by Gawker management so that everything I say in this Q + A is official company policy.*