Last Updated: 6/21/2016
Do you Reddit? I’m a true-blue Redditor for sure. I promised you a Reddit guide, but it’s been done hundreds of times over. I’m a proponent of not trying to best what someone else has done well enough. Some big players like Mashable and Kissmetrics have both put together pretty exhaustive guides, so I’m going to tell you why I find it beneficial rather than tell you how to use it. I’ll give a few tips, and then you can take off running with it, or not. I’ll also link up those guides below so you can really drill it down. Cool? Cool.
What Is Reddit?
Why, it’s the “front page of the Internet”. At least that’s what they call themselves, and it’s pretty accurate. Simply put, it’s an enormous forum with something for everyone set up in an uncommon way. Arriving on Reddit.com can be confusing to say the least. It looks like someone lost their bookmarks all over the page.
Each of these headlines is a link to some content: some text, an image, or a video, that a Redditor has shared with the community. Reddit is also broken up into sections based on interests/subject matter called Subreddits. There is a subreddit for nearly any topic, hobby, place, thing, or interest you can imagine times a thousand. Seriously…just type something in the search box in the top right sidebar and you’ll see.
So basically, Reddit is a huge community made up of smaller communities that cover nearly every topic known to man and then some. There are hundreds of reasons why this is useful, and I’m going to share with you why I think so. First, a warning…
Just as Reddit has a large and fantastic community, it also has a fringe community that you can choose to be a part of or not. There are vast sources of pornography aboard Reddit if that’s what you’re into. There’s probably a subreddit for your fetish. There are other dark areas as well…just a search away. No, I can’t link you because frankly, it’s not my thing. Just be aware that when I say “every topic known to man” that’s exactly what I mean.
How Reddit Works
I’m not the end all be all authority on Reddit. There are probably some awesome things I’m missing out on. (I need to read those guides.) However, I have managed to make it past the “confused” phase of perusing the site. Now is the time for you to go ahead and create an account if this seems like something you could find useful. (Do it! It is so useful!). It’s quite easy and painless.
Here are the basics:
- Navigation – I think this is one of the reasons Reddit confuses a lot of people. The navigation isn’t the norm. It’s that little thin bar across the top of your screen.
If you’re not logged in or a new user, what you’ll see in this top bar is a list of default subreddits. These are subreddits that everyone starts out subscribed to unless you unsubscribe. Some of these are great while others are just meh. It’s up to your personal taste.Here you can see the FRONT page is highlighted in red. This indicates that the FRONT page is your current page.
- Tabs – Notice all of the subreddits have tabs at the top that allow you to view a certain status of the topics in that subreddit.
These are pretty self-explanatory. The only one that is a bit mysterious is gilded. Reddit gold is a thing and gilded posts are ones where users have donated Reddit gold to the user who posted the content.
- Reddit Front Page – The FRONT page is where all of the updates to your subscribed subreddits will appear. When you log into Reddit, you can get up to speed here on what’s going on.
- All Page – The ALL page shows HOT updates from all the subreddits so you can be sure you didn’t miss something you’re not subscribed to.
- Searching Reddit – There a couple ways to go about this. If you want to search Reddit as a whole, for example, if you were searching for a subreddit, you would search from the FRONT page. If you want to search the subreddit you are currently in or a specific subreddit, you can specify from the the search on the FRONT page or search directly from the subreddit itself
- Subscribing to subreddits – So you’ve found a subreddit you can’t put down. Subscribe to it! Many subreddits will have a custom look, so the types of buttons and links will vary, but it will always be in the right sidebar.
- Upvotes and downvotes – You may have noticed that each post of Reddit has an up and down arrow to the left. This allows users to vote yay or nay for the content therein. Upvotes move the content upward in the popularity while downvotes do the opposite. This is how content ends up in the Hot and Top tabs.
- Stick to the rules – Reddit is very particular when it comes to the rules and their culture which they call “reddiquette”. You’re going to want to be familiar with it and adhere to it if you plan on being an active part of the community.
How I Use Reddit
Reddit pretty much drives my Twitter account right now. It is my sole source for content to curate and share with my followers. I share a variety of content from writing prompts to quotes to photographs of abandoned places around the globe. You can see how that’s going for me from my recent post. This is the biggest way I use Reddit currently.
If Reddit went under, I’d be hard-pressed to find a source half as good, and who knows if I could use it with my automation system. Using Reddit, I can get the latest news, opinions, articles and more from ALL of my interests in one place. There’s nowhere else online you can really do that…at least not in the same way.
I use Reddit to pass time. I read it a lot before bed, or while I’m watching the football game. (Yes, there’s an app. More on that later.) I have my automated system set to Tweet any Reddit posts that I upvote, so alongside my automated posts which I’ve picked from a variety of subreddits, I also have posts that I’ve handpicked as well. It adds a more personal touch to my Twitter timeline.
I just created my first subreddit in hopes of being able to share my blog posts and take advantage of Reddit’s traffic, but I haven’t done much with it as of yet. We’ll see what happens. It’s more important for me to be able to continue using Reddit the way I am than to be banned because I pissed someone off. Which brings me to…
The Dreaded Shadow Ban
Reddit is policed by a force of Admin and Moderators that do not put up with spam, ignorance, or any dodgy BS. They will ban you with the click of a mouse and not give it a second thought. I got shadow-banned when I first set up my last account several months ago. I had an account before that for years…I think I’ve had it about 7 or 8 years, but I wanted a different username. Anyway, I got shadow-banned which is the worst kind because you don’t know you’re banned. You’re able to post and browse, but you’ll notice you’ve been banned when no one responds to you. That’s what a shadow ban does. It makes you invisible to other Reddit users. So, unless you want a short-lived stay, I suggest following the rules. Redditors are merciless. No quarter will be given, lads and lasses.
A Couple of my Favorite Tools
I’m sure there are more! As cool as Reddit is, I bet there are some ways out there to make it even cooler. I just haven’t found them yet. Anyway, I have a found a couple that are essential for me and thought I’d share them with you.
- Reddit Enhancement Suite – I’ve had this so long, I can hardly remember what Reddit is like without it. It’s just a script that runs in your browser and does cool things like makes Reddit endless scroll instead of having to click over to the next page using pagination. Get it here for your favorite browser – http://redditenhancementsuite.com/
- BaconReader – This is my favorite Reddit app that I use on my phone. You can grab it for Android or iOS – http://baconreader.com/ I like it because it allows me to do everything I can do on Reddit on my PC, on my phone.
That’s pretty much all I got on Reddit. For more definitive guides that will take you deeper because I left a lot out, check out these links:
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