While many subreddits remain dark after the 48-hour blackout last month, the mod team of Reddit’s IAmA subreddit (aka Ask Me Anything) announced its future plans. The team wrote in a mod post that, moving forward, IAmA will run “like your average subreddit” and the volunteer mods won’t take part in soliciting celebrities and high-profile figures to do AMA sessions.
This comes days after Minecraft developer Mojang said it will stop sharing official updates via Reddit. While the IAmA mod team will continue doing regular activities like moderating, spam removal, and enforcing rules, it will take a step back from the following activities in the future, “effective immediately”:
Active solicitation of celebrities or high profile figures to do AMAs.
Email and modmail coordination with celebrities and high profile figures and their PR teams to facilitate, educate, and operate AMAs. (We will still be available to answer questions about posting, though response time may vary).
Running and maintaining a website for scheduling of AMAs with pre-verification and proof, as well as social media promotion.
Maintaining a current up-to-date sidebar calendar of scheduled AMAs, with schedule reminders for users.
Sister subreddits with categorized cross-posts for easy following.
Moderator confidential verification for AMAs.
Running various bots, including automatic flairing of live posts
Over the years, Reddit’s AMA community has grown into a space frequented by many with a strong user base of 22.5 million. It has given users a chance to interact with the likes of Bill Gates, Nicolas Cage, Keanu Reeves, Barrack Obama, and more recently, Reddit’s CEO Steve Huffman who addressed an AMA session about the controversial API changes.
The IAmA subreddit was vocal during the 2015 Reddit protests following the termination of AMA moderator Victoria Taylor. However, it didn’t go dark along with other subreddits as part of the recent protests as “it reflects our belief that such actions will not make any significant difference this time.”
The mod team said that it will allow most AMA topics on the subreddit, “leaving proof and requests for verification up to the community.” It will focus on “removing rule-breaking content alone” and won’t allow “fake AMAs explicitly,” but the community will have to pay more attention.
Will this undermine most of what makes IAmA special? Probably. But Reddit leadership has all the funds they need to hire people to perform those extra tasks we formerly undertook as volunteer moderators, and we’d be happy to collaborate with them if they choose to do so.
The latest announcement from the AMA mod team shares its timeline with the demise of the third-party Reddit app Apollo, along with other popular names, including RIF, Sync, and Beacon Reader. Apollo’s developer Christian Selig released a farewell wallpapers set and requested paid subscribers to decline pro-rated refund payments as the cost will come onto his shoulders.