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Reddit’s transparency report shows a big spam problem and relatively few government requests

Reddit’s transparency report shows a big spam problem and relatively few government requests

Reddit has published its transparency report for 2020, exhibiting various numbers relating to eliminated roar, government requests and other administrative actions. The largest problem by far — by way of quantity, anyway — is spam, which made up nearly all roar taken down. Legal requests for roar takedown and user information have been far fewer, nonetheless no longer trivial, in quantity.

The fleshy report is terribly readable, nonetheless a bit long; the main features to understand are summarized below.

Early Newspaper

Of nearly 3.4 billion gadgets of roar created on Reddit (which is to say posts, feedback, hosted images, and so forth.), 233 million have been eliminated. These numbers are both up by 20%-30% from 2019. Of these 233 million, 131 million have been “proactive” removals by the AutoMod gadget and 13.6 million have been eliminated after user reports by subreddit moderators.

The remaining 85 million have been taken down by Reddit admins; 99.76% of these have been spam or “roar manipulation” adore brigading and astroturfing, with around 50,000 each of harassment, hate and sexualization of minors, smaller amounts of violent speech, doxing and so on.

Chart showing that content removal on reddit was largely spam.

Image Credit: Reddit

82,858 subreddits have been eliminated, nearly four occasions more than 2019. The majority of these have been for lack of moderation, followed by hate, harassment and ban evasion (e.g., r/bannedsub starts r/bannedsub2).

When it came to casting off feedback, hate, violence and harassment have been great more prevalent. And 92% of private messages eliminated (of about 25,000 total) have been for harassment.

Launch air of spam and roar manipulation, hate speech resulted in far more bans than any other infraction; more accounts have been permanently banned for hate in 2020 than for all causes blended in 2019. (But far fewer for roar violations than for spam and ban evasion.)

Government requests to accept roar have been relatively few. Overall Reddit obtained a couple hundred requests overlaying about 5,000 gadgets of roar or subreddits. For example, 753 subreddits had their access restricted to Pakistani customers attributable to anti-obscenity laws there.

Requests from individuals or companies to accept issues numbered in the hundreds, and copyright takedown notices asked for about half a million gadgets of roar to be eliminated (375,774 have been), more than twice 2019’s. Entirely a handful of DMCA counter-notices have been obtained.

Law enforcement came to Reddit 611 occasions for user information, up 50% from last year, and the company granted 424 of these requests. These are principally subpoenas, court orders and search warrants. Since Reddit isn’t really a social network and accounts can be essentially anonymous or throwaway, it’s hard to say what stage of disclosure this actually represents. Emergency disclosure requests numbered about 300 and have been principally complied with — these are supposedly existence-or-death situations via which a Reddit account is anxious.

Lastly Reddit obtained somewhere between 0 and 249 secret requests for data, targeting somewhere between 0 and 249 customers, same as last year. Sadly, federal law prohibits them from saying any more than this regarding FISA orders and National Security Letters.

Overall the image painted of Reddit in 2020 is of a increasing community plagued by spam and inauthentic activity, plus a significant and increasing contingent of hate, harassment and other prohibited roar (although last year was undoubtedly an exceptional one for this). Lacking great fundamental access to or employ of personally identifiable data, Reddit isn’t great of a target for 3-letter agencies and law enforcement. And with “free speech”-focused alternatives to Reddit and other platforms stoning up, it’s likely that the hate and harassment that have been deplatformed will roost in other places in 2021.

Reddit’s transparency report shows a big spam problem and relatively few government requests