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Using Reddit the Social News Website

written by: •edited by: Robin L.•updated: 2/12/2009

Reddit is a lot like Digg with user submitted stories being voted upon by the community. You can search by various topics and popular content rises to the top of each section with articles on the front page pulling in huge traffic. It is free to sign up, easy to use and provides a useful resource.

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    Reddit is a social news website which is very similar in concept to Digg. Various links are submitted to individual web pages and users can vote on them with an up or down arrow. The articles with the most votes rise to the top with the most popular appearing on the front page of the Reddit website. You can also search for content by category and the website features a very simple layout which makes it easy to use.

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    Reddit was founded in 2005 by a couple of graduates from the University of Virginia, they managed to secure funding and merged with Infogami in 2006. Later the same year Conde Nast Publications, the owner of Wired magazine, acquired the company and in 2008 the code was released to the public and Reddit became an open source project.

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    Signing Up

    It is completely free to sign up for Reddit and proves to be a quick and painless process. There is no real profile to set up and if anyone clicks on your username they will just see a list of the articles you have voted on, comments you have made and articles that you submitted. You can build karma from suggesting good content and having people reward you or by posting comments but it serves no obvious function other than letting people know you are a good user.

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    Using Reddit

    There are loads of topics and sub topics, known as subreddits on the site so you can always find some interesting content. If you use the service frequently and vote on content it will build up a profile of your tastes and return links that should appeal to you. You can also give other users karma for suggesting good content and people with a high karma rating may build up a following of surfers who regularly check out their submitted links. You can also add friends and you’ll see their submissions highlighted. You can surf links on the main page and vote by clicking on the up or down arrow next to the article title, if an article receives enough down votes it will disappear. The quality of the content is pretty mixed and the Reddit site pulls in less votes than Digg but anything with a large number of up votes is generally worth a look.

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    Promoting your Content on Reddit

    You can also submit links to Reddit yourself by sending bookmarks with the Reddit bookmarklet set (which is basically a toolbar for your internet browser) or you can submit them on the Reddit webpage. All you’ll have to do is enter a catchy title, there’s no requirement to choose a topic or describe the content so it is quick and easy to add things but this also means as you surf looking for content it can be tough to tell what articles are likely to be about because you only have the title to go on. If you manage to get one of your web pages onto the front page of Reddit you can expect a big influx of traffic. Most of the popular content on Reddit has a shelf life so you won’t remain on the front page for more than a day. As usual the only way to get votes is to have quality content that people enjoy.