my subscriptions
baltinerdist 4,813 points

u/spez, u/arabscarab, u/kn0thing:

If a Comcast or Verizon or whoever approaches reddit and says they're basically putting together a "Social Media Elite Pro MegaAccess" package that gives you a different level of access (non-throttled or maybe even priority traffic) to your website, are you willing to sign that deal?

The users are going to get the short end of this stick but the long end still reaches out to the sites that are cordoned off by un-neutral net.

spez [A] 1019,973 points

No. We don’t negotiate with terrorists.

mailmygovNNBot 521,802 points

Write to your Government Representatives about Net neutrality

(The brand new) MailMyGov was founded on the idea that a real letter is more effective then a cookie cutter email. MailMyGov lets you send real physical letters to your government reps. We can help you find all your leaders:

  • federal (White house, House of Representatives, Supreme Court, FCC & more)
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...using just your address and send a real snail mail letter without leaving your browser.

Other things you can do to help:

You can visit these sites to obtain information on issues currently being debated in the United States:

Donate to political advocacy

Other websites that help to find your government representatives:


Please msg me for any concerns. Any feedback is appreciated!

Edit addressing some concerns below

Hello, this is the owner of MailMyGov. First of all thanks to u/spez ... the bot is positively beaming :) I think it deserves the weekend off.

Also wanted to address a couple of the comments. Yes places like are awesome and amazing and you should use them. So are all the other links in the bot post. But afaik, they don't let you send a real letter. Our letters are printed out and mailed in house (a deliberate decision for security and privacy) in NYC. Every letter is double-checked to be sure everything is printed, enveloped, stamped and sealed properly. A real human does all of this, and a real human goes to the post office every morning and drops them off. All of this does mean that it's a bit more expensive to get this all done, not to mention payment processing fees, api usage costs, server costs and the overhead.

Hope this helps, and regardless, the everyone should try their best to organize, inform, advocate and VOTE and we hope MailMyGov can help in some of that.

Cheers! (any feedback is always welcome)

spez 317,382 points

good bot

Chel_of_the_sea 2,222 points

People depend on Reddit, and we felt it would be irresponsible to take it offline, even for a protest as important is this one.

Then put up a big, impossible to miss splash page. Let people get to vital information if need be, but if this passes, you're going to be denying a lot more people that access anyway.

spez [A] 1,695 points

We did exactly that back in July when the FCC requested comments.

baldr83 1,275 points

Can you do it again? Or at least a bar at the top of every page?

spez [A] 1,340 points

Not strictly opposed to it, but I do want to make sure we are spending our and your energy where it will be most effective. I don't think we can affect the FCC's vote in Dec because it's clear they're disregarding the views of the public.

Depending on what happens afterwards, whether it's a court challenge or legislation, we'll coordinate our next moves with the community.

update: Actually, we're going to put something up.

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YoureNotEvenWhite 229 points

Mobile user here... Are you guys looking to implement more detailed subreddit info on the mobile app? When I go onto a subreddit, I'm currently unable to view the subreddit rules, etc. and a lot of times have my posts removed because of my lack of information. Thank you!

spez [A] 119 points

Submit-time validation is high on our list. That'll mean users get errors immediately instead of being surprised later. Should help, I think.

SenatorCockface 463 points

Do you ever sit down and think "God, what did I just get myself into?"

spez [A] 683 points

Yes. I forgot to turn Post Replies off today.

Honestly, there have been times over the years, but they are few and far between. Yes, it can be intense and stressful at times, but we are very proud of Reddit and the positive impact it has on people's lives. I know it's not perfect, but we improve every day. I feel so fortunate to have the opportunity to make a difference, not everybody gets this opportunity, and I think we have a moral obligation to make the most of it.

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nopuppet__nopuppet 756 points

Are you going to be responding to the feedback posted in this thread that was overwhelmingly negative? You guys promised to take in all the feedback and as far as I can tell, it's been completely disregarded.

You're usually pretty good about keeping us appraised apprised of any changes so the lack of detail here is implying that there have been none, and that would be disappointing.

So...any update?

spez [A] 131 points

I more or less answered this here.

The short answer is: there was some good feedback in that thread, but also plenty that isn't super relevant. With profile pages in particular, I think showing will be better than telling. It's going to take some time for it to be a cohesive product.

The feedback was received, and I think when the dust settles it'll be received much better.

Update: I realize I didn't actually give you a a product update. Profile pages as a feature are about 25% complete. We have a lightly redesigned page (temporary) and personal subreddits. This gives people a place to post, but not much incentive to do so. What we're missing that we believe makes this feature more cohesive are privacy controls, smart comment display (most reddit original content are in comments), and x-posting as a first-class feature (e.g. u/shitty_watercolour can post to his profile and he or others can x-post in r/comics or r/funny or whatever). I generally don't like sharing features before they actually exist, but that's the gist of what's to come over the next couple of months.

WeylandTheDwarf 521 points

With all due respect, this sounds alot like:

You wouldn't be negative if you understood what I'm doing. Once I'm finished you'll like it. If you don't like it, you'll probably be done complaining by then and I can continue doing what I want.

If there is no chance of you backing down on a decision, then it seems misleading to ask for criticism. Moving forward to test the waters seems fair if you are willing to unwind the decision if there is still criticism. Otherwise, it's sounds more like you were wanting positive feedback rather than actual criticism.

spez [A] 159 points

You wouldn't be negative if you understood what I'm doing. Once I'm finished you'll like it. If you don't like it, you'll probably be done complaining by then and I can continue doing what I want.

You're not wrong. It's more like, once we've released more, your feedback will be more valuable, but right now the product is in its infancy so it doesn't make much sense. That said, we've actually have learned a lot, so I'm content with the current situation.

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spez commented on a post in r/programming
KeyserSosa [A] 560 points

The original original deployment scheme was pretty much "^C the reddit process running in screen on the server."

At least I hope it was in screen...

spez [A] 641 points

It was not.

KeyserSosa 23 points


spez 38 points

Maybe! The only reason I'm certain it wasn't screen is that I distinctly remember learning about screen thinking, "this will make things so much easier!"

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Drunken_Economist 216 points

spez wat about srs

spez 494 points

They can have CSS too.

frahm9 242 points

Thank you for listening guys. If I pick CSS, will I be able to customize mobile?

spez [A] 333 points

It won't be one or the other, but CSS won't affect mobile.

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JustForgiven 2 points

Favorite cs and non cs book suggestions ? :) thanks for the AMA !

spez 11 points

Favorite cs book is probably Ansi Common Lisp or On Lisp by Paul Graham.

Favorite non cs book... probably whatever I read last, which is approximately: Pre-suasion, Deep simplicity, the Dark Tower series.

spacemoses 6 points

Hi spez,

Thanks for the ama. What was the first language you toyed around with when you were younger? What are the three top characteristics you find most important in a professional software developer?


spez 22 points

My best languages over the years:

BASIC -> C -> Pascal -> Java -> Lisp -> Python -> Not Javascript

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reseph 31,846 points

EDIT 2: Join us at /r/ProCSS if you're seeking CSS support to stay.

EDIT: Fellow moderators, take this survey. (Live results here)

Called it.

I don't support this.

Many subreddits are different, and have different goals or CSS tweaks. I don't see how this will actually be considered a working replacement? For example if 50 subreddits use CSS to add extra buttons like "Read FAQ" below "Submit a new link" but the other 4000+ subreddits don't, would the admins actually give this dev time to implement? Are the admins actually going to implement every use case we moderators use CSS for to accomplish functionality? I don't see that being feasible. If not, then this is simple a loss in functionality for many many subreddits.

So what, we're just homogenizing Reddit now? And I'm not talking about the visuals, but functionality.

I can never see one blanket "theme" system/style to cover all subreddits working as they used to.

CSS has accomplished:

  • Functionality: /r/Overwatch has subreddit filters
  • Functionality: /r/Dota2 has a list of current livestreams and their # of viewers
  • UX: /r/videos has a list of rules where on hover it expands out to explain each rule
  • Functionality: /r/Minecraft has a list of server status (icons) on sidebar
  • UX: /r/Hearthstone has notices & links on the top banner
  • Personality: /r/ffxiv has various CSS Easter Eggs to give it a bit more personality
  • Functionality: /r/Starcraft has a "verified user" system
  • UX: /r/Guildwars2 increased the the size of "message the moderators" to make it stand out more
  • UX: /r/ffxi has a small tooltip if a user hasn't set a user flair yet
  • UX: /r/DarkSouls2 has related subreddits linked on the sidebar with images instead of text
  • Personality: /r/mildlyinfuriating's joke where it slightly rotates "random" comment threads
  • Functionality: /r/ClashOfClans not only has a list of livestreams, but thumbnail previews of each
  • UX: /r/DarkSouls3 has a reminder when hovering over the downvote button
  • Personality: /r/StarWars has quote popups when you upvote
  • UX: /r/pcmasterrace has changed the "report" link to red
  • UX: /r/explainlikeimfive has custom colored link flair icons
  • Personality: /r/mylittlepony has countless emotes
  • Personality: /r/onepiece has a scrolling banner (which can be paused)
  • UX: /r/FinalFantasy has green background stickies to make them stand out
  • Personality: /r/mildlyinteresting has a moving gauge on sidebar
  • Functionality: /r/IASIP has a top menu
  • UX: /r/DoctorWho has a light red box on sidebar for new users to read
  • UX: /r/gallifrey disables the PM link on "Created by" so users focus on modmail

At the minimum, I see this as taking away the personality each subreddit has. We also lose the ability to control and improve UX, considering the admins have been exceptionally slow to improve any UX (even something like link flair).

To be clear, I'm not upset by the fact that the time we spent on our CSS is being made useless. I'm upset that we'll be losing functionality and individual subreddit personality.

[EDIT] Fellow mods, please remember to be civil here. I may not agree with this decision about CSS, but I still respect the admins and all the hard work they do.

spez [A] 82 points

Just replying here so you know that I've seen it.

These are all great examples of cool stuff folks have done with CSS, and there are many more.

My goal today is to affirm that while CSS isn't the technology of the future for us, subreddit customization is important, and we're going to continue to evolve it.

I doubt I can convince you today with anything I say, but we're going to move forward, test carefully, and I hope you'll be a part of the process.

[deleted] 482 points

Silly admin thats not how you whitespace

spez 96 points

I knew someone would do this. If I wasn't on an ipad in a college cafeteria, I'd figure out how to fix.

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spez commented on a post in r/cscareerquestions
darexinfinity 2 points

You do say reddit is hiring, but we hear that all the time. Companies that say this usually mean that they're passively hiring the same way an engineer will say "I'm keeping my eyes out for opportunities" even though some may not go anywhere at all.

Is Reddit passively hiring or actively hiring? By active, I mean going through an expansion and have to fill-in those positions by a certain deadline.

spez 19 points

In advance of Monday, yes, we are actively hiring! Pretty much any sort of engineer. Yes, in San Francisco.

spez commented on a post in r/me_irl
spez [A] 3,700 points

As per our totally authentic announcement, everyone who upvoted this thread gets a little Gold.

update: this offer expired 3 months ago.

LegenW84ITdary 68 points

He said browsing habits, there is still a lot of information they have besides that. Email, location, device ID....

spez [A] 245 points

We don't share any individually-identifying PII, such as emails, but we do allow advertisers to target based on location.

[deleted] 137 points


spez [A] 188 points

I mention this elsewhere, but part of our strategy has been to store as little as possible to minimize surface area. However, it's not practical to store nothing (e.g. IPs and emails), and we may ask for more down the road to enable other features (e.g. friends). Where we can, we want to give you the ability to choose how you participate.

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spez commented on a post in u/kn0thing
spez 19 points

Let's be clear: that pitch that was "one of the best he's heard," wasn't Reddit. Who knows what it could have been? Oh, well. There's always another train coming.

RonDunE 3 points

Wait this reminds me, is the shuffman56 account yours? Lots of reddit blog posts from 2006-ish are signed by that name, like this one:

spez 12 points


spez commented on a post in r/announcements
[deleted] 321 points


spez [A] -87 points

We're going to try it out in a few admin comments. If it performs well will roll it out to a broader group.

allthefoxes 9 points

I think everyone is missing your joke

spez -23 points


When I read the comment replies out of context in my inbox, I would never have guessed they were in relation to this comment...

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funderbunk 317 points

So many times when my expectations were low and I thought, "They can't possibly fuck this up that badly", it turned out that whoever I was giving the benefit of the doubt rose to the occasion and fucked it up even worse.

spez [A] 653 points

In that case, I feel confident that we will exceed your expectations.

mrpopenfresh 4148 points

Spez, do you think the world is doomed? How can I prepare for the impending disasters? Should I buy gold????

spez 124 points

I don't, actually, but it never hurts to have gold.

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jaspersnutts 1,073 points

As a subscriber to r/the_donald I would love it if you did work to reprimand the people spreading the message of hate, racism, bigotry, homophobia, etc..

The actions of the few should not generalize all of us. The vast majority of us welcome anyone no matter what race, gender, religion you belong to. We didn't want to make america great again for half the country. We want to make it great for everyone.

Edit: Thank you kind stranger for the gold! MAGA!

spez [A] 1,641 points

I agree entirely with this sentiment. This message needs to come from your moderators. If it does, the community has a chance. If it does not, r/the_donald is trending in the wrong direction.

CaptInsane 4,001 points

How do you feel about ArsTechnica's David Kravets comparing you to Ellen Pao, and that despite all the hate she got she didn't stoop this low?

Even Ellen Pao, the former Reddit CEO, didn't change comments despite a barrage of insults levied at her last year as the site began cleaning up its community.

spez [A] 2,002 points

It's fair. Ellen wasn't the first Reddit engineer, so she probably lacked the expertise to do it, and even if she did, she was smart enough to not.

u: Since this is blowing up, let me clarify. Ellen wasn't an engineer, so she probably lacked access, and if she did have access, she wouldn't have done this. I have said many times I thought the way she was treated on Reddit was despicable. The changes we made to r/all earlier this summer would have mitigated some of the harassment, and I regret we didn't make those changes years ago.

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spez commented on a post in r/The_Donald
trollocity 211,021 points

So... how many other comments all over reddit have been edited anonymously by an admin?

spez [A] 39-2,758 points

None. This was a case of me trolling the trolls for a bit.

nBob20 [M] 6,996 points

It’s been a long week here

It's fucking WEDNESDAY


spez 2-2,345 points

Come on. It's a short week.

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spez commented on a post in r/AskReddit
spez 2,711 points

I started Reddit with my college roommate of four years, Alexis Ohanian (u/kn0thing), immediately after graduation in 2005. Not having a big vision for the company, we more or less went with the flow, building whatever we felt like each day. As a result, when an opportunity to sell came along, we took it, selling to Condé Nast in 2006. We had little expectations for the company, so it seemed at the time like we were getting away with something.

Alexis and I stayed with Reddit, under contract with CN, through 2009. I left because I wanted to try something else. I started Hipmunk in 2010 with another buddy, Adam Goldstein. He was the CEO and I was the CTO. I worked on Hipmunk for the next five years, learning many important lessons and unlearned many bad habits I had developed at Reddit. Meanwhile, Reddit continued to grow, eventually spinning out from Conde in 2012, and raising more money towards the end of 2014.

Reddit went through some hard times (yadda yadda yadda...), and in July of 2015, I returned as CEO.

Eabryt 145 points

How come my subreddit got a message about both the beta for new modmail AND the sidebar expansion, and both times neither of them have happened?

spez [A] 204 points

We only needed so many communities for testing, but thank you for volunteering.

u/powerlanguage, u/Eabryt just wants to help!

remzem 241 points

Have you guys done any looking into the claims of governments / political groups paying people to influence users? This seems to be something that everyone can agree on being bad, though one side would probably point to something like CTR while the other would point to something like Putin bots. Seems like a lot of the effect is likely just exaggerated and has more to do with how the upvote system can lead to the appearance of really large swings in opinion, when they are in fact not as big, if an issue is divisive. Still seems worth looking into though. Would it even be possible to tell if this sort of activity is happening?

spez [A] 311 points

Yes, actually. It's mostly exaggerated and largely ineffective, but people do try.

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spez commented on a post in r/electronicmusic
spez 39 points

Yo! No question, but whenever I absolutely need to get people get up and dance, I put on GRiZ. My friends role their eyes at me by this point... but then they get up and dance. You're responsible for a lot of fun times. Thanks!

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About spez

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