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Reddit gets overrun by photos of John Oliver

There has been a weeklong protest over Reddit's new policy of charging third parties for the use of its data.
Reddit gets overrun by photos of John Oliver
Posted at 12:59 PM, Jun 19, 2023
and last updated 2023-06-19 15:00:04-04

As part of ongoing protests over changes to Reddit's API policies, users have been overrunning the platform with photos of comedian John Oliver. 

The takeover started last week when 90% of users on the Pics subreddit voted to "only allow images of John Oliver looking sexy" on the page. 

"Uncompensated contributors populate the platform's many communities with their content, just as volunteer moderators keep spam and bigotry at bay," the Pics subreddit moderator wrote. "Since neither we nor Reddit would be here without you, it was only fair to let you determine what r/Pics should include... and you overwhelmingly chose to feature only images of John Oliver looking sexy."

Word got to Oliver by Saturday, who offered his blessing.

"Dear Reddit, excellent work. Attn: r/pics — have at it," he wrote, threading a number of goofy photos of himself.

SEE MORE: Reddit moderators revolt against CEO, blackout subreddits

Reddit relies primarily on unpaid moderators to keep content relevant. Users are protesting changes to how third parties use the platform. 

Reddit CEO Steve Huffman addressed the changes being made to Reddit. The statement came nearly two months after Huffman first announced that some third parties that use Reddit would be charged a fee. 

"Reddit needs to be a self-sustaining business, and to do that, we can no longer subsidize commercial entities that require large-scale data use," Huffman said. 

That decision meant some apps, including Apollo, Reddit is Fun, and Sync, are closing. 

Reddit moderators said there have been efforts to lift a blackout conducted by subreddit moderators. Moderators have been exploring alternative protest methods to express their displeasure with the platform. 

"We have to work within the limits imposed by Reddit, but there is still plenty of ways to get the message to Reddit and mass media about the important issues of the protest, that will affect the quality of content on Reddit, how people with disabilities can access the site and how mods can fulfill their duties," wrote user Demmian. 


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