Social Media

Reddit will punish hundreds of 'toxic users' and hide some posts from pro-Trump community

Colin Lecher

Reddit CEO Steve Huffman said in an announcement today that the site will take action against hundreds of its "most toxic users," and will make changes to prevent some posts from its popular pro-Donald Trump subreddit r/the_donald from appearing on one of the site's main hubs.

Huffman says the site 'cannot tolerate' the group's behavior
Heather Rousseau | The Denver Post | Getty Images

The news follows controversial actions by Huffman, who admitted last week to covertly editing comments that criticized him, replacing his username in the comments with those of moderators for r/the_donald. The blog post includes another lengthy apology about the incident, but also says the site "cannot tolerate" the group's behavior any more. Huffman writes that the subreddit, which has been known to use the site's "sticky" feature to push its posts up the site's rankings, will have its sticky posts removed from r/all — a major section near the site's front page. (The site will also introduce filtering options to r/all.)

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"More than anything, I want Reddit to heal, and I want our country to heal, and although many of you have asked us to ban the r/the_donald outright, it is with this spirit of healing that I have resisted doing so," Huffman writes. "If there is anything about this election that we have learned, it is that there are communities that feel alienated and just want to be heard, and Reddit has always been a place where those voices can be heard."

The site has identified hundreds of its 'most toxic users'

The punishments for the users identified by the company will range "from warnings to timeouts to permanent bans," according to Huffman. "We will continue taking on the most troublesome users, and going forward, if we do not see the situation improve, we will continue to take privileges from communities whose users continually cross the line—up to an outright ban," he writes.

r/the_donald has long been a major source of controversy for Reddit, and has often been hostile to administrators of the site, going so far as to make an organized campaign comparing them to nazis.