In a post by Alexis Ohanian yesterday, Reddit, which has 202 million monthly users, announced that it was launching “a hub to give the stories of Reddit—from the seemingly ordinary to the extraordinary—the creative space to expand, breathe, and grow.” The new publication is called upvoted.com.
Reddit has been expanding their original content creation. In January, Reddit launched a podcast called Upvoted “to give voice to the Redditors whose stories grace our tens of thousands of frontpages.” The podcasts got more than 1.6 million downloads. In April, Reddit began a curated weekly newsletter called Upvoted Weekly that included Reddit’s “favorite posts you probably missed during the week.” Upvoted Weekly has over 212,000 subscribers, an average open-rate of 32% and click-through rate of 35%.
What do people think so far? In Wired, Julia Greenberg writes, “In the works for the past year, the site looks and feels much like any other news site out there. It will have stories, infographics, illustrations, videos, and podcasts. It will include articles on news, sports, animals, and lifestyle issues. It will have its own website, upvoted.com, and a dedicated editorial team creating original stories. But, unlike other news sites, it will be a part of Reddit. And, very much unlike Reddit, it won’t allow comments on the site at all. (Nor, despite its name, will it have any kind of upvoting system.)”
According to Greenberg, Upvoted’s stories “are culled, curated, and written by a small editorial team.” The team of about 10 people is lead by former Myspace editorial director Vickie Chang. Their editorial process is that they find “stories on Reddit, verify the details, interview the original posters, and then write articles for Upvoted.”
Greenberg also theorizes about why Reddit is creating a publication now. “Reddit’s decision to launch an editorial site is, in part, an experiment to figure out how it can continue to grow,” writes Greenberg. “But it also seems to be, in part, about Reddit’s frustration with other news sites that find story ideas on Reddit. They’ll later repost the stories on their own sites, and, in essence, profit from Reddit’s community when the stories go viral.”