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Reddit's '/R/Politics' Moderators Continue Awesome Streak Of Dumbness

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Yesterday, we looked up the Internet's ass and told you about the total fuckwads at Reddit's /r/politics page, where a small group of Little Hitlers had decided to ban almost 100 news sites for the crimes of being "sensationalist," "blogspam," or "bad journalism." There were a lot of names on that list! Ones you probably haven't heard of, like Mother Jones and National Review and Think Progress and Raw Story. It was really really really stupid! The moderators at /r/politics were constantly apologizing to the 3.1 million pissed-off subscribers, but they were only apologizing for their bad communication.


Well, now they have explained the thinking that went into their blanket ban, as well as reinstating one (1) website, the journalism-award magnet Mother Jones. Would you believe that their explanation is really, really, really fucking dumb? Let's pull out the speculum, as it is time to move from /r/politics's ass to its vagina, and see if we can't get out that sand.

(If you're curious, Wonkette does not seem to be on the list of banned domains, unless we are being lumped in with "Gawker and all affiliates," which considering the amount of research they've put into this list, would be somewhat less than surprising.)

First, everybody kept being like "but what do you MEAN by 'sensationalistic' or 'bad journalism'?" and /r/politics has some answers!

We know that the lack of information surrounding this policy has greatly exacerbated a lot of the emotions and feelings of powerlessness that you've felt about this policy.

With that said, we have completed our review of MotherJones and have unbanned that domain.

Some notes on that review:

  • We completed two separate reviews of the top 25 MJ posts submitted to /r/politics. In one review, 14 stories were original content, while 11 stories consisted mostly of content from other sources. In the second review, 7 stories were considered to be either blogspam or arguably blogspam. In both cases, a majority of the top-voted content was not blogspam.
  • A third review listed the 12 most recent submissions to /r/politics from motherjones. One pair of these submissions was a repost of content. 6 of the remaining 11 titles were what could be described as sensationalist (including titles such as "16 ways the default will screw Americans" and "How the GOP's Kamikaze Club Hijacked John Boehner.").

Oh. So a submission to a innerwebs page about politics cannot state that something would screw Americans, or that a group of deranged terrorists are doing terrorism. Why would anyone want to read opinion -- even very well reported and cogently synthesized opinion -- in a place devoted to politics? That would just be silly!

Okay, so that's really, really, really fucking dumb. COULD IT GET FIFTY MILLION TIMES DUMBER?

Sure why not.

See that part in bold, the part THEY PUT IN BOLD? That part refutes the part right before it, where it says, "Our rules and moderating mentality are firmly grounded in reddiquette, particularly where it says the following[.]" Because right after that it says DON'T do the thing they are about to do!

Can the moderators at Reddit's main politics subreddit, /r/politics, read?

Apparently the answer is no.

Because they're fucking idiots.

:(

UPDATE! Moderator "theredditpope" comments over there:

Originally, when we banned these domains we said, "Alright, we don't want to be biased here against an ideology we just want to reduce blog spam and hyperbole." So we banned equal domains on the left and the right.

One big piece of feedback we have received is that by removing very popular liberal sites on this subreddit and somewhat unpopular conservative sites that show up on this subreddit then the balance is not struck in an appropriate way. It gives the impression that we want liberal sites gone more than republican sites when in reality we just wanted sites what some would call "sensationalized content or blogspam" banned that users complained about in our week long feedback sticky 3 months ago.

Obviously there is over reach and we want to correct that problem. Major conservative, liberal, and neutral sites are all up for re-review but MotherJones received an outpouring of support by this community so that was first on our list. Stay tuned for more.

Oh, "balance." If you take away 10 kidney beans from one person, and 10 steaks from another, that is just and equitable. On one side? Media Matters and Mother Jones. On the other? Fox Nation and Weasel Zippers.

You are still A Idiot.

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