Reddit cracks down on site-wide bullying

Social news site introduces harassment policy

Reddit has changed its policies in order to curb harassment that has plagued sections of the site.

The social news site admitted that bullying and harassment have been growing as the site becomes more popular, 

In an official blog post, admins wrote: "We've seen many conversations devolve into attacks against individuals. We are also seeing more harassment and different types of harassment as people's use of the internet and the information available on the internet evolve over time.

"For example, some users are harassing people across platforms and posting links on reddit to private information on other sites."

A survey conducted by Reddit admins in March revealed that a full 50 per cent of active users would not recommend the site, due to "hateful or offensive content and community".

As a result, the site is finally allowing users to report harassment by emailing contact@reddit.com or modmailing them.

Reddit defines harassment as: "Systematic and/or continued actions to torment or demean someone in a way that would make a reasonable person (1) conclude that reddit is not a safe platform to express their ideas or participate in the conversation, or (2) fear for their safety or the safety of those around them."

The site has been criticised for its hands-off approach to dealing with these problems.

Though the site claimed that it intervenes if it identifies "threats to our values of privacy and safety", it previously relied for the most part on volunteer community moderators to police its users.

Though these moderators will still be used to deal with harassment, the new rules have made it explicitly clear that antisocial behaviour will not be tolerated.

Reddit has pre-empted potential complaints of censorship by reaffirming its commitment to free speech and transparency. The company said this policy was "specifically designed to prevent attacks against people, not ideas".

The site banned revenge porn' in February, which are pornographic pictures put up without the subject's consent - though it'll only remove them if the victim contacts admins.

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