Reddit Goes Dark

Casey Newton at Platformer:

As a result, Reddit is a rare social product that has seemed to become more relevant over time, as a growing user base comes to appreciate its distinctive, human-centered approach to digital conversations. Another result, though, is a user base that feels uncommonly possessive of the product.

That history begins to explain the meltdownthat has taken place on Reddit over the past day, as thousands of communities go private — effectively taking themselves offline — to protest changes that will eliminate most third-party apps, and could threaten third-party moderation tools and research initiatives. So many forums went dark on Monday, in fact, that Reddit itself briefly crashed.

I was a late comer to Reddit — my account is just over four and a half years old — but is tied to a third-party app, Apollo, which will go away at the end of the month. After Twitter’s demise, Reddit had, in many ways, replaced it as my media diet to fall asleep to.

I don’t know how many users Reddit will lose, or if it will walk back any of its announced changes, but there was practically nothing to read this morning, so I deleted Apollo today and suspect I won’t return to Reddit in any meaningful way. The web experience really is that terrible.