While trying to browse your favorite gaming community on Reddit this morning, you may have noticed that it's inaccessible. That's not due to a hack or other technical issue. Instead, these gaming subreddits and so many others have been effectively shut down as a protest.
The root cause was the abrupt termination of Victoria Taylor. Taylor was Director of Talent at Reddit. She primarily helped with AMAs (Ask Me Anythings), public interviews with questions posed by Reddit users. The interviewees ranged from celebrities to anonymous employees of corporations like Google or Apple. Taylor acted as a liaison between the interviewees and Reddit. She would help schedule the AMAs, verify the identity of the people being interviewed and also help resolve any issues that occurred during these question-and-answer sessions.
The moderators of /r/IAmA, the subreddit devoted to AMAs, said that Taylor was vital to their day-to-day operations. Because the mods had no advance warning of Taylor's departure, they have to scramble to find a new way to hold their AMAs. They decided to make the subreddit private while they reorganize. While private, a subreddit can only be browsed by moderators and pre-approved users.
Dozens of subreddits have switched to private as well to show solidarity. They're not only protesting Taylor's termination but also Reddit's general attitude toward its volunteer moderators. A post on /r/OutOfTheLoop summed up the sentiment:
You can find the full list of subreddits that are currently private here. The largest video game community on the site, /r/gaming, is one of them. They're joined by several other popular subreddits devoted to games like GTA 5, Fallout, BioShock and Skyrim.
One of Reddit's employees responded to the protest with an interim solution. They ask that all AMA inquiries be sent to AMA@reddit.com, an email address being monitored by a team of employees:
It's unclear how long these subreddits will stay private. Even if it just lasts a day or less, though, I think they've delivered an effective message: Reddit is run by its community and pissing them off is a bad idea.
Staff Writer at CinemaBlend.
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