There Have Been 153 Million Posts on Reddit in 2018. Here’s What Everyone Is Talking About
The news-and-discussion site is a zeitgeist machine, and illuminates some online trends.
PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images
It's been a big year for Reddit.
The internet's largest privately held social site posted its 2018 year in review on Tuesday, revealing new statistics on the massive volume of content its users produced and the range of topics they covered.
So far in 2018, 153 million posts have been made to Reddit, with those posts getting 1.2 billion comments. (Little-known fact: Redditors type in 50,000 words per minute.)
What changed this year for the site? Probably the biggest thing was video: Reddit saw a nearly 40 percent increase in video consumption. It's been more than a year since the site debuted native video hosting, and now it is serving up more than 400,000 hours of video every day, according to the year in review post. Engagement among Redditors also increased, with 22 percent more comments and upvotes, and 30 percent more page views than last year.
On the other hand, some things didn't change at all for CEO Steve Huffman and company. The number of avid Redditors, for example, remained at 330 million, the same as the beginning of the year. When the company raised venture capital funding in mid-2017, it claimed 300 million. That's not huge growth, considering Huffman has a mandate from the company's board to grow its user base to 1 billion.
Toward that goal, Reddit has taken strides to make the site (and some of its 150,000 communities) friendlier to new users, including launching a long-overdue redesign. Yet of the five most popular posts of the year, two were total Reddit inside jokes involving the constantly trending community defending Avengers villain Thanos, who--sorry, Avengers: Infinity War spoiler necessary--wiped out half his fictional universe. It's called r/thanosdidnothingwrong, and this year Reddit gave its moderators permission to pull an extreme stunt to "honor" Thanos: Randomly cull half its subscribers.
Other top posts of 2018 included a video of a tiny frog jumping into a bath in a bottlecap full of water, and a photo of a mural of pandas from a Chinese restaurant that had been converted to Mexican cuisine. (The pandas were given sombreros and the bamboo adorned with chiles.)
What else was popular this year? Everything in the zeitgeist: Politics, wildfires, and technology were a few major topics. AMAs, or "Ask Me Anythings" by Bill Gates, Jordan Peterson, firefighters, net neutrality experts, Stacy Abrams, FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, a student who survived a school shooting, and an individual receiving test payments in a Universal Basic Income experiment.
Reddit isn't just a mirror of the Internet; it can also illuminate societal trends. Perhaps disturbingly, one of the most popular new subreddits created this year is descriptively called r/PovertyFinance, or "personal finance for the financially challenged."
The year in review post also addressed what is expected to be big next year. It's simple: Game of Thrones. The show's Reddit community had been one of the internet's most passionate fan bases for anything ever on television. With the final season airing next year, Reddit predicts "engagement to outpace all years past."
Reddit also forecasts growth in the spread of some internet slang redditors are already fluent in. Here's a smattering:
- "Bootcut Bandits," aka "people wearing relaxed straight pants over a fresh pair of high tops or sneakers"
- RDR2, the game Red Dead Redemption 2
- ENCE, an e-sports team
- And this guy.