Apple subreddit reopens after moderation team threatened with removal

Posted:
in General Discussion edited June 2023

The Apple subreddit has reopened under duress after a protest about API fees was squashed by threats from the company's CEO to remove the moderation teams of closed subreddits.

Reddit coerces mods to reopen subreddits
Reddit coerces mods to reopen subreddits



Reddit's Data API was updated in April, introducing a premium access tier for developers that offered additional features, increased usage limits, and expanded usage rights. These modifications were met with considerable resistance.

To express their discontent with the API modifications, a multitude of subreddits on Reddit are engaging in a protest by temporarily going dark for a duration of 24 to 48 hours. When a subreddit goes dark, it becomes private and inaccessible to the public, demonstrating unity.

The API changes will make it virtually impossible for third-party Reddit clients to function without paying exorbitant fees. One notable instance involves developer Christian Selig, who announced that the popular app Apollo would shut down on June 30 due to escalated expenses.

With a fee of $0.02 per user for access, he estimated that Apollo would incur an annual cost of approximately $20 million for continued access.

Reddit protests met by threats from CEO



Numerous subreddits, including r/Apple, intended to maintain indefinite privacy for their communities as a protest. But the moderators announced recently that the Apple subreddit is back after Reddit threatened to reopen subreddits against the moderators' will.

"If a moderator team unanimously decides to stop moderating, we will invite new, active moderators to keep these spaces open and accessible to users," the post says. "If there is no consensus, but at least one mod who wants to keep the community going, we will respect their decisions and remove those who no longer want to moderate from the mod team."

Some users are urging moderators to resign in protest, highlighting that the role of a moderator on Reddit is voluntary and unpaid, in contrast to companies such as Facebook that provide compensation for similar positions. As a result, some moderators are indeed taking that course of action.

In a recent interview, Reddit CEO Steve Huffman told The Verge that the company plans to continue charging access to its API, regardless of the protests. He believes that third-party apps unfairly piggyback on Reddit's success, and is apparently unaware that Reddit's success is because of the posts by the users that use the service in all of its forms.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 18
    mknelsonmknelson Posts: 1,115member
    "The Apple subreddit has reopened under duress after a protest about API fees was squashed by threats from the company's CEO to remove the moderation teams of closed subreddits."

    Did anybody else read that sentence and have to stop and think: "Do they mean Tim Cook?" as Apple is the only company explicitly named by that point in the article.
    Oferappleinsideruserwatto_cobracurtis hannahbadmonkAlex1N
  • Reply 2 of 18
    Anilu_777Anilu_777 Posts: 517member
    mknelson said:
    "The Apple subreddit has reopened under duress after a protest about API fees was squashed by threats from the company's CEO to remove the moderation teams of closed subreddits."

    Did anybody else read that sentence and have to stop and think: "Do they mean Tim Cook?" as Apple is the only company explicitly named by that point in the article.
    No, clearly Reddit’s CEO. Many people don’t like the official app. Twitter did a similar thing with client apps, withdrawing their ability to use Twitter’s API. Having third-party apps is a good thing and shows a client is popular but also shows that the official one is sub par. The popular Twitter client Tweetbot made a Mastodon app which is quite popular with users when it was then unable to make a Twitter app. 
    davOfermagman1979pscooter63roundaboutnowwatto_cobraJaiOh81Alex1Ndanox
  • Reply 3 of 18
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,854member
    The Apple subreddit has reopened under duress after a protest about API fees was squashed by threats from the company's CEO to remove the moderation teams of closed subreddits. 
    I believe the word you wanted was 'quashed', not 'squashed'.


    edited June 2023 Ofergregoriusmnapoleon_phoneapartdettpscooter63watto_cobraAlex1N
  • Reply 4 of 18
    torb9htorb9h Posts: 14member
    ‘and is apparently unaware that Reddit's success is because of the posts by the users that use the service in all of its forms’

    Not apparentl at all. Users on third party apps represent a small % of total users. 
    williamlondonpscooter63
  • Reply 5 of 18
    perfect, there was no doubt the fool that runs apple(subreddit) which is not real apple, was going to cave in the first place.
    I'm not happy about losing Apollo, but things change, we move on. 
    You simply do not get to control a platform you do not own, and are only a moderator at.  I personally think the Mods that shut down are pathetic little babies.

    That's before asking why?  Moderators that do not make a thing and run a subreddit?  
    Either they were making $$ on the third party apps, (real reason so mad?) or they got some sad lives man.  LOL 
    pscooter63
  • Reply 6 of 18
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,786member
    torb9h said:
    ‘and is apparently unaware that Reddit's success is because of the posts by the users that use the service in all of its forms’

    Not apparentl at all. Users on third party apps represent a small % of total users. 
    But they represent the power users and mods, who are what enable Reddit’s success. If the mods stand together they have power to affect change. 
    williamlondonappleinsideruserlolliverfoadAlex1N
  • Reply 7 of 18
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,786member
    IOW, they caved. All it took was one predictable threat of removal. Well duh, of course they were going to remove you. Stand true to your principles and let them do that. 
    lolliverpscooter63foadMeteorAlex1N
  • Reply 8 of 18
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,854member
    perfect, there was no doubt the fool that runs apple(subreddit) which is not real apple, was going to cave in the first place.
    I'm not happy about losing Apollo, but things change, we move on. 
    You simply do not get to control a platform you do not own, and are only a moderator at.  I personally think the Mods that shut down are pathetic little babies.

    That's before asking why?  Moderators that do not make a thing and run a subreddit?  
    Either they were making $$ on the third party apps, (real reason so mad?) or they got some sad lives man.  LOL 
    You sound like a fun guy at a party.
    williamlondonfoadwatto_cobraJaiOh81Alex1N
  • Reply 9 of 18
    chutzpahchutzpah Posts: 392member
    I would have held firm.  If Reddit wants to engage that way then let them find some other poor saps to work for them for free.
    watto_cobraMeteorJaiOh81Alex1N
  • Reply 10 of 18
    IOW, they caved. All it took was one predictable threat of removal. Well duh, of course they were going to remove you. Stand true to your principles and let them do that. 
    This is exactly what they should have done. We need Reddit to remove moderators forcibly from key subreddits, resulting in nobody wanting the role and management quickly discovering just how difficult it is to source competent free labour to keep things running well.  

    With that said, they’re now offering to keep API access available for free for notable FOSS Reddit clients. It seems they’re only targeting third party apps which are both proprietary and trying to make money from their work.  If Reddit keep their word and extend that to FOSS moderation tools too, then the protest will have been successful regardless.
    foadwilliamlondonwatto_cobraJaiOh81Alex1N
  • Reply 11 of 18
    kestralkestral Posts: 308member
    Mods are supposed to remove spam, not push their own agendas. They didn't even ask the users if they wanted to do the blackout. From the response on Reddit, generally the users don't care. The mods are just butthurt that the tools they use to push their agendas and create their echo chambers will no longer work. I say good for Reddit. F the mods.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 12 of 18
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 2,217member
    perfect, there was no doubt the fool that runs apple(subreddit) which is not real apple, was going to cave in the first place.
    I'm not happy about losing Apollo, but things change, we move on. 
    You simply do not get to control a platform you do not own, and are only a moderator at.  I personally think the Mods that shut down are pathetic little babies.

    That's before asking why?  Moderators that do not make a thing and run a subreddit?  
    Either they were making $$ on the third party apps, (real reason so mad?) or they got some sad lives man.  LOL 

    You don't believe in peacefully protesting to see change?

    I think the Reddit CEO/leadership handling of this has been pathetic and childish. If they were compassionate, they would have found a middle-ground solution, instead of standing firm like a bully in the playground.

    Does Reddit have a right to operate a healthy business, which means not giving away their goods to app developers that are making a profit? Absolutely! That's not the issue here.

    The protest has always been about offering *reasonable* API fees AND a *reasonable* timeframe to adjust to the changes. Reddit offered neither of those.

    watto_cobraMeteorwilliamlondonzimmieAlex1N
  • Reply 13 of 18
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 2,217member
    kestral said:
    Mods are supposed to remove spam, not push their own agendas. They didn't even ask the users if they wanted to do the blackout. From the response on Reddit, generally the users don't care. The mods are just butthurt that the tools they use to push their agendas and create their echo chambers will no longer work. I say good for Reddit. F the mods.

    Are you a registered reddit user? Did this blackout personally affect you?

    If the answer is "no" to either of those questions, then your cold-hearted opinion doesn't really matter. Reddit mishandled this situation from the start. That's the issue that was being protested.

    Will it blow over and life will go on? Yes. Maybe the /r/apple mods realized that having the channel open is better for the greater good? That doesn't make them wrong in their initial response. Nor does it make peaceful protests a false approach.
    roundaboutnowwilliamlondonwatto_cobraJaiOh81Alex1N
  • Reply 14 of 18

    And do you work at Reddit?  Do you understand the economics at work there?  What is “reasonable” and how did you arrive at it?  The fact is this isn’t some utopian world. Reddit’s product is a discussion forum and they need to monetize it. They have no obligation to keep their api’s even open. What if they said they wouldn’t allow third party apps at all?  

    Your view that this is some “societal” or “moral” issue to protest is a bit naive. 

    coolfactor said:
    perfect, there was no doubt the fool that runs apple(subreddit) which is not real apple, was going to cave in the first place.
    I'm not happy about losing Apollo, but things change, we move on. 
    You simply do not get to control a platform you do not own, and are only a moderator at.  I personally think the Mods that shut down are pathetic little babies.

    That's before asking why?  Moderators that do not make a thing and run a subreddit?  
    Either they were making $$ on the third party apps, (real reason so mad?) or they got some sad lives man.  LOL 

    You don't believe in peacefully protesting to see change?

    I think the Reddit CEO/leadership handling of this has been pathetic and childish. If they were compassionate, they would have found a middle-ground solution, instead of standing firm like a bully in the playground.

    Does Reddit have a right to operate a healthy business, which means not giving away their goods to app developers that are making a profit? Absolutely! That's not the issue here.

    The protest has always been about offering *reasonable* API fees AND a *reasonable* timeframe to adjust to the changes. Reddit offered neither of those.

    edited June 2023 williamlondon
  • Reply 15 of 18
    chutzpahchutzpah Posts: 392member
    simbalion said:

    And do you work at Reddit?  Do you understand the economics at work there?  What is “reasonable” and how did you arrive at it?  The fact is this isn’t some utopian world. Reddit’s product is a discussion forum and they need to monetize it. They have no obligation to keep their api’s even open. What if they said they wouldn’t allow third party apps at all?  

    Your view that this is some “societal” or “moral” issue to protest is a bit naive. 

    I would start by reading Christian Selig's side of the story.

    For instance if this is anything like true, then "reasonable" is a long way away.

    Apollo's price would be approximately $2.50 per month per user, with Reddit's indicated cost being approximately $0.12 per their own numbers.

    A 20x increase does not seem "based in reality" to me.

    Or this, for the transition period to update third party apps.

    As a comparison, when Apple bought Dark Sky and announced a shut down of their API, knowing that this API was at the core of many businesses, they provided 18 months before the API would be turned off. When the 18 months came, they ultimately extended it another 12 months, resulting in a total transition period of 30 months. While I'm not asking for that much, Reddit's in comparison is 30 days.


    No one is saying that Reddit doesn't have the right to do any of this.  Many are saying that they're assholes for how they're going about things.  They have no obligation to not be assholes either, but people aren't going to like it and that's why there are protests.

    edited June 2023 MeteorzimmieJaiOh81muthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondonAlex1N
  • Reply 16 of 18
    65c81665c816 Posts: 136member
    You simply do not get to control a platform you do not own, and are only a moderator at. 
    This is something that everyone should agree with.
    I personally think the Mods that shut down are pathetic little babies.
    And I think you are the pathetic kind of ass who infects the forums with your negativity.
    That's before asking why?  Moderators that do not make a thing and run a subreddit?  
    Either they were making $$ on the third party apps, (real reason so mad?) or they got some sad lives man.  LOL 
    That you cannot see other possibilities shows what kind of sad pathetic person you are.  The fact that wikipedia exists show how people are happy to spend their time to help improve global knowledge for everyone.  These moderators are also happy to help people.  But in your mind, they are either making money (not true) or have sad lives (also, probably, not true).  You are the sad pathetic one.
    JaiOh81Meteormuthuk_vanalingamwilliamlondonAlex1N
  • Reply 17 of 18
    danoxdanox Posts: 2,696member
    The Apple subreddit has reopened under duress after a protest about API fees was squashed by threats from the company's CEO to remove the moderation teams of closed subreddits. 
    I believe the word you wanted was 'quashed', not 'squashed'.


    Seems to work fine ?????????

               verb (used with object) dictionary.com
    1. to press into a flat mass or pulp; crushShe squashed the flower under her heel.


      https://www.thesaurus.com/browse/quashed The words are interchangeable at the discretion of the writer.

    williamlondon
  • Reply 18 of 18
    danoxdanox Posts: 2,696member
    perfect, there was no doubt the fool that runs apple(subreddit) which is not real apple, was going to cave in the first place.
    I'm not happy about losing Apollo, but things change, we move on. 
    You simply do not get to control a platform you do not own, and are only a moderator at.  I personally think the Mods that shut down are pathetic little babies.

    That's before asking why?  Moderators that do not make a thing and run a subreddit?  
    Either they were making $$ on the third party apps, (real reason so mad?) or they got some sad lives man.  LOL 

    You don't believe in peacefully protesting to see change?

    I think the Reddit CEO/leadership handling of this has been pathetic and childish. If they were compassionate, they would have found a middle-ground solution, instead of standing firm like a bully in the playground.

    Does Reddit have a right to operate a healthy business, which means not giving away their goods to app developers that are making a profit? Absolutely! That's not the issue here.

    The protest has always been about offering *reasonable* API fees AND a *reasonable* timeframe to adjust to the changes. Reddit offered neither of those.


    Reddit is just circling the drain and are making room for new competition to come on through. It has run its course. Their Mac section by the way is terrible filled with ads and people posting ridiculous fix it comments. 

    Reddit does have the right to charge but they like Twitter have run their course, the general public are moving on to the next thing.
    edited June 2023 williamlondonMeteor
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