Reddit, the so-called “front page” of the Internet that 172 million people use monthly, has developed a reputation for allowing pretty much anything.
“We will not ban questionable subreddits,” Reddit’s then-CEO, Yishan Wong, wrote several months ago. “You choose what to post. You choose what to read. You choose what kind of subreddit to create.”
However, Reddit appears to have backpedaled on this statement with the banning of 5 subreddits, including the popular r/FatPeopleHate.
“We want to be open about our involvement: We will ban subreddits that allow their communities to use the subreddit as a platform to harass individuals when moderators don’t take action,” the company said in a statement explaining the bans. “We’re banning behavior, not ideas.”
Reddit’s censorship has led to a Reddit user exodus to alternative, Voat.co.
Now an anonymous email has been shot gunned to multiple media outlets (most probably won’t release it because the anonymous claim is difficult to substantiate) allegedly written by a disgruntled Reddit employee stating that Reddit plans to sue Voat for copyright infringement and defamation:
To Whom It May Concern:
I’m sorry I can’t give you my real name as I cannot afford to lose my job at the moment, but I’ve been a Reddit employee for five years and have been disgusted by how Reddit has become more and more corporate. I can tell you that they are very threatened by Voat and potentially other “clones” punching holes in their website. They have investor pressure to stop the loss of users, even though the loss is small right now.
The legal team is currently planning to sue Voat for copyright, alleging they copied the layout and functionality of Reddit, plus corporate defamation as, they say, users have unfairly misprepresented Reddit on Voat and Voat has allowed those defamatory comments to remain on their site.
This is obviously a frivolous lawsuit, but anybody can sue anybody and Reddit knows they can legally overwhelm Voat and sink it fast.
I urge people to leave Reddit and start using Voat and support them in any way: give them money, write blogs urging people to switch, whatever you can think of to help. It’s going to take a big crowd to fight Reddit and hopefully make them revert back to their original mission statement — or, heck, bring them down even though I would lose my job.
Thanks for publishing,
We replied to this email and did not get a response. We obviously can’t verify the authenticity, but we’re publishing it anyway. We can’t stand big corporations relentlessly sticking it to the little guy in their search for more and more profit.
Whether this email is legit or not, it’s time to fight back. Sign up for Voat here.