Reddit launches moderator rewards program amid sitewide discontent 

Reddit is launching the “Mod Helper Program” to reward moderators who provide useful recommendation to different moderators, together with an up to date moderator assist heart. 

The announcement comes amid rising discontent among the many website’s moderators, lots of whom relied on third-party apps which have since been shut down due to Reddit’s API pricing. Moderators have requested Reddit to enhance the official app’s moderation instruments, that are missing in comparison with these provided by now-defunct third-party apps. Tensions between Reddit and its moderators are nonetheless excessive, as the location’s admins proceed to take away whole mod groups for preserving their subreddits non-public in protest of the API pricing, which third-party app builders criticized as exorbitant and unsustainable. 

The Mod Helper Program is a tiered system that awards useful moderators with trophies and flairs. Reddit customers accrue karma by receiving upvotes and awards, and lose karma in the event that they obtain downvotes. This system rewards moderators who obtain upvotes on feedback in r/ModSupport

Remark karma earned in r/ModSupport will probably be rewarded with trophies that can “sign to different mods that you’re a supply of precious data,” the moderator help workforce introduced on Thursday. Every rank awards distinctive trophies and flairs, starting from “Helper” to “Professional Helper.” Reddit launched a comparable program in r/assist earlier this 12 months, which rewards customers who accrue karma by responding to different customers’ requests. 

“Reddit could be a advanced place for amateur and knowledgeable Mods alike, and the information that you just share with one another right here is extremely highly effective,” Reddit admins wrote in r/ModSupport. “It will each acknowledge Mods who’re notably useful and dependable sources of information for his or her fellow Mods, all with the purpose of celebrating your help of one another and fostering a tradition on this group the place mods readily collaborate and study from each other.” 

Reddit additionally launched the Modmail Reply Bot, which mechanically responds with related hyperlinks to the location’s Assist Middle. If the advisable articles don’t reply a particular request, it would create a ticket that will probably be dealt with by a human admin. The bot is designed to streamline moderator requests so the admin workforce can concentrate on extra advanced points. 

Moreover, Reddit is merging the moderator-specific Assist Middle with its sitewide one to make sure that help sources are “simple to seek out and accessible from the identical location.” 

The connection between Reddit and its moderators has grow to be more and more strained in current months. Over 8,000 subreddits shut down for 48 hours in June in protest of Reddit’s new API pricing, which went into impact on July 1. Reddit CEO Steve Huffman claimed that the blackout was led by a minority of moderators, describing them “landed gentry.” The remark sparked additional outrage amongst moderators, who spend hours working the platform’s communities with out pay. In current months, Reddit has ramped up its efforts to smother the insurrection by eradicating moderators who refuse to reopen their subreddits. As soon as-thriving subreddits like r/malefashionadvice are crumbling as Reddit replaces protesting moderators with inexperienced customers. 

Reddit has been sluggish to roll out moderation instruments that had been as soon as provided by third-party apps, and the updates that the location has launched are clumsy and inaccessible. Although Reddit made an exception to its API pricing for accessibility apps, that are essential for blind customers, its in-app moderation instruments aren’t accessible for blind moderators. Reddit’s most up-to-date accessibility replace was riddled with bugs and “launched a pile of recent points,” in accordance with a moderator of r/blind. 

The response to the peer-to-peer helper program was combined in r/ModSupport. One person questioned whether or not automating the help request system would solely make it more durable to obtain assist from a “actual particular person.” Additionally they famous that the subreddit exists for moderators to debate points instantly with admins, not with different moderators. 

“Admin participation hasn’t been nice right here,” the person continued. “I don’t know if that’s since you guys aren’t acquainted sufficient with mod instruments to offer significant help to the mod group, or for those who simply can’t be bothered. However you appear to principally depend on the mod group to handle questions and issues right here, and that’s not what individuals come right here for.” 

In probably the most upvoted remark replying to the announcement, Reddit person MapleSurpy expressed frustration over the shortage of helpful moderation options out there on Reddit’s official app. Moderators have requested ban evasion instruments and “precise assist from admins” when coping with “drawback customers,” MapleSurpy stated. 

“We’ve requested for higher instruments on the official app to run subs now that Reddit took away each single third-party one,” they stated. “What did we get? One other automated system … and aptitude rewards. Thanks SO a lot, I’m positive this can resolve a whopping zero issues.” 

One other person identified that the flairs aren’t based mostly on feedback which are truly useful, and that “snarky people who find themselves humorous” will attain “knowledgeable very quickly.” 

In a reply to the thread, an admin stated that Reddit’s product groups are engaged on “a number of the points” that moderators have introduced up, and will probably be launching enhancements to cell options. 

“Our workforce isn’t engineers — so that you don’t need us constructing you issues, nonetheless — we do spend our time speaking to moderators concerning the points you’re going through and advocating again to the product groups,” the admin, who’s a part of the moderator help workforce, stated. “Automating a number of the lower-hanging fruit permits us to spend extra time each serving to with the extra difficult points and compiling issues from mods to assist prioritize the instruments being constructed.”