Reddit kicks out controversial Covid subreddit after mass protest

Reddit has taken action against a community spreading disinformation about Covid-19 (Getty)
Reddit has taken action against a community spreading disinformation about Covid-19 (Getty)

Reddit has taken action to shut down a controversial community spreading disinformation about Covid-19 and the severity of the pandemic.

The r/NoNewNormal subreddit regularly featured posts criticising face masks and dismissing the effectiveness of vaccines.

Following a mass blackout from several other popular subreddits, the self-proclaimed ‘Front Page of the Internet’ finally gave r/NoNewNormal the boot.

It said the subreddit, which had 124,000 subscribers, was guilty of ‘brigading’ – the practice of harassing other subreddits.

‘We found very clear signals indicating that r/NoNewNormal was the source of about 80 brigades in the last 30 days (largely directed at communities with more mainstream views on Covid or location-based communities that have been discussing Covid restrictions),’ a member of Reddit’s safety team said yesterday.

‘This behaviour continued even after a warning was issued.’

The move to block the controversial community came after 135 other subreddits announced they had ‘gone dark’. This means the forums blocked any non-members from viewing or joining them.

Some of the site’s largest subreddits, like r/Futurology and r/TIFU with 10 million subscribers each, went dark to protest against the Covid misinformation.

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