I love reddit. I’ve been a member for over five years now, ever since the exodus from Digg. It’s changed and it’s stayed the same. But it’s scary to see the shift now, and I’m not talking about the user revolt.
I think the most important thing about reddit to me has always been it’s open. You can make a subreddit for anything, which has led to finding some brilliant niche content on there. Some of it is questionable. Some of it is even objectionable. But I’ve always figured it’s like a big city, there are going to be streets that you don’t want to walk down but that doesn’t mean I should get a bulldozer and raze the block.
And that seems to be what Pao is doing. In the eyes of myself and a lot of users it’s the same fears as things like Cameron’s porn filter. For now it’s jokes about fat people, six months later it can be anything else that is objectionable to a potential advertiser (and the bullshit responses that it’s not are laughable).
I may not like what some of the people in those subreddits say. I may think they’re scum of the earth. But as long as they don’t threaten harm against people, I’m going to fight to make sure they have the right to say what they want. Because there is no “line” that defines objectionable. Today they’re on one side and we’re on the other, but tomorrow?