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    • Thank you for the insight and honesty - the eight problems resonate. I must confess that, although I've been looking around here for a few days, I hadn't realized the full benefit/potential of panel discussions. Now that I do, I'm looking forward to sitting back and watching experts do their thing!

    • What makes you think that bad actors will not create Panel discussions which are filled with other bad actors? Anyone, as far as I know can create a panel discussion, so what is to prevent toxic panels?

    • Good question, Chris. ๐Ÿ™‚ The answer I give them is eventually we'll have to run ads (interest-based because we know what topic everyone is talking about, we don't need to do surveillance capitalism). Aside from interest the ads depend on audience size. So if some famous celebs do a panel that gets a zillion reads, I think it's good for advertisers in the same way it's good for investors when a YouTube gets a zillion views. Maybe better than a million people chatting about something mundane.

      (We also hope to do the equivalent of YouTube Red subscription in the future to let people opt out of ads.)

    • That sounds like a very good idea; maybe add Hide as an option like we have Follow now so you never have to see it again. Our engineering team are probably wincing thinking about making that work well at scale.

    • Ugh. I hate to be redundant, but the lack of threaded conversations here is really challenging. I would think that a comment parent ID would be trivial, but not having any idea what your architecture looks like, I'm sure it's probably more complicated than I think.

      The interest based ads model has worked reasonably well for Reddit, but it wasn't enough to fully solve their revenue issues. Reddit Gold and Cake...Frosting?..seem like a reasonable premium model, depending on how efficient your stack is. If your interface starts lagging hard (and even the Plus had issues with this), your burn rate is going to increase faster than planned just on infrastructure scaling.

      I don't think "Opt out of ads" is sufficient on its own for Premium, though. My uBlock Origins is doing an adequate job of that, so what incentive do I have to pay? Brand loyalty factors into the equation (and I have been a Reddit Gold user since it began), but it was a ten year cycle for Reddit to build up to the point of making any serious money off of Gold. Perhaps a more evolved Freemium model?

      BTW, I'm not just a gadfly; I'm really happy to be here, and glad I saw Robert's post on the Plus. I've experimented with every new platform that's come along, but they were all deeply flawed, and certainly none of them have the pedigree you bring to the table. I sincerely hope this platform takes off.

    • I hate to be redundant, but the lack of threaded conversations here is really challenging. I would think that a comment parent ID would be trivial, but not having any idea what your architecture looks like, I'm sure it's probably more complicated than I think.

      It's a design decision, not a technical limitation, but I hear you. Behind the scenes we do have all the data necessary to support a threaded view, and we've talked about offering both threaded and flat views as options. Just takes time. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • I am nothing if not patient with emerging platforms, especially when the principals acknowledge feedback. Brian Rose was really good about that over at Plus, which is part of what led to Google Photos.

    • There are plenty of places where that works well, no question. But from a pure usability perspective, when I'm replying to a comment high up in the thread, and bounced to the bottom of the thread to do so, it's a ton of extra work to keep scrolling back up to find a non-highlighted non-quoted comment to pull sections out to reply to. If the comment you are replying to was fully quoted in your reply by default, or if there was a UI element which showed the comment you were replying to while composing, the experience would have much less usability friction.

    • On the arc of social networks, I have a huge motorcycle forum and motorcyclists are pretty frisky. Over the years as we've created subforums we watched the arc go from hard-to-get-traction ==> positive network effects ==> awesomeness ==> it's getting hard to keep up and it's getting noisy in here ==> it's getting impersonal, who are these n00bs? ==> oh look, here come the spammers and trolls.

      We would then slice the subforum into pieces. We'd get a few howls but 9 times out of 10 it would restore the pieces back to positive network effects. Some would stay small enough, like Old's Cool, a subforum for restoring vintage bikes, that it has stayed great for years.

      Our hope was that by enabling the topic structure we have, people could create very specific topics, like Ural Patrol sidecars, to keep the signal to noise high.

    • Sounds like exactly what I've come to expect from online communities.

      I like the idea of perpetually subdividing topics breaking it up, but I haven't seen that effect on Reddit. That being said, new sandbox, new rules. Maybe y'all will be the ones to crack it.

    • The interest based ads model has worked reasonably well for Reddit, but it wasn't enough to fully solve their revenue issues. Reddit Gold and Cake...Frosting?..seem like a reasonable premium model

      Fascinating, Chris. I have loved Reddit for years and probably spend 20 minutes there every day, but I haven't known how their revenue streams work other than I like Gold and no ads.

      My understanding in speaking to advertisers is they have been worried that Reddit isn't brand safe because of all the controversies.

      @thomashawk , we are rolling out a subscription service on my motorcycle forum, Adventure Rider, and fingers crossed. No ads is the main benefit. We're hearing positive things but we will see what percent of users sign up.

    • I haven't seen it on Reddit either and I'm not sure why. I think starting a new subreddit is hard and 95% of them never get traction. We're hoping starting a new topic is easy enough. We're seeing people do that and invite people they know to it, so we're hopeful.

    • Holy crap. I just realized after all this time that the arrow next to the "Replying to" box expands into the full quoted comment. #UIFail. :D That certainly makes it easier to keep track of what I'm responding to, to @thomashawk 's point.

      I have a ridiculously high karma on Reddit (no, I won't reveal my username), and have been an active user since the Digg 2.0 debacle (another promising community shot through the heart by not understanding the mechanics of online communities). I've watched it go from Spez and Kn0thing's playground for nerds to a global community serving a billion pageviews a month, and I think there are a lot of lessons to be learned from their evolution during that time. Perhaps even more so than Facebook, if quality conversation is part of your product's mission.

    • I had an option of threaded or flat on Adventure Rider for years and it seemed like technical people who used sites like Reddit liked threaded, but we didn't have many of them on ADV so we eventually dropped the option. It had less than 10% usage there, I guessed because motorcyclists weren't too savvy and they tended to get lost in the threading.

      My intuition makes me feel they work better when there is a post with comments, but not as well when it's a conversation and you want to follow it from start to end.

    • Holy crap. I just realized after all this time that the arrow next to the "Replying to" box expands into the full quoted comment. #UIFail. :D

      There is a tricky little shortcut you see @yaypie and I using: if you highlight some text in the post you're replying to, we will automatically highlight that snippet as you see above ๐Ÿ‘†.

      I believe you with Reddit learnings. Can I call? I just sent you a friend request on Facebook because we haven't built private messaging yet (too many things!).

    • Over the years as we've created subforums we watched the arc go from hard-to-get-traction ==> positive network effects ==> awesomeness ==> it's getting hard to keep up and it's getting noisy in here ==> it's getting impersonal, who are these n00bs? ==> oh look, here come the spammers and trolls.

      I'm not sure exactly where it belongs, but you left out "what ever happened to ...." or "why did so-and-so stop posting", etc. I think that comes before the "who are these n00bs".