Known for its sense of humor, niche communities and willingness to tackle controversial topics, Reddit offers features that other social media platforms simply don’t. But before we can get into why Reddit is so popular, let’s get into what it is.
What is Reddit?
Founded in 2005 by a couple of students with some time on their hands, Reddit is home to one of the most vibrant, clever, and hilarious communities online, numbering hundreds of millions of visitors each month.
Reddit is known for its vast array of communities, or "Subreddits," dedicated to virtually every topic imaginable. Whether you're interested in cats, cooking or cryptocurrency, there's a Subreddit for you. In each Subreddit, members post forum-like threads of content—it could be a link, a story, a photo, a survey etc.—accumulating replies as well as “up” or “down” votes to rate the quality of the post. The end result is a multitude of original and fun content that will take up hours of your day if you don’t practice self-control.
To illustrate more clearly what makes Reddit so addictive, we compiled a list of our favorite Reddit qualities.
Why Reddit is so popular
01. Because it's not about showing off
Restroom selfies? Not here. Unless you’re going for sarcasm, that is. Reddit is not a social network that encourages (or imposes) the type of non-stop exhibitionism that you find on so many other social platforms. A Redditor’s profile only shows you their previous threads and their ranking—no relationship status, business CV or anything like that.
02. Because of the AMA Subreddit
Ask Me Anything is one of the most popular and intriguing sections on the site. Anyone can go on it, present a certain aspect of their life and take questions from the audience. The interactions vary from a self-proclaimed “extreme couponer” being asked if store clerks hate him to Former president Barack Obama being asked to share the recipe for the White House beer. These questions can also answer very practical day-to-day things like how to make a website or what to make for dinner. Social media engagement is especially high on Reddit exactly because of interesting, and potentially controversial, Subreddits like these.
03. Because you learn so much
There’s a reason why Reddit is so popular with the nerdy slice of the world’s population. It’s an incredible source of information on pretty much every field of human knowledge. You can browse through the many Subreddits in philosophy, languages, coding, molecular gastronomy or whatever makes your mind hungry. Our recommendation: Don’t skip the Today I Learned Subreddit, which contains hours of fun, enlightening and sometimes utterly useless trivia bits.
04. Because it's a community
Reddit has a bad reputation for being filled with trolls and anonymous weirdos. While these users are definitely around, they are not representative of the majority of Redditors at all. You will find people giving free legal advice, comforting others in pain, helping members to organize surprises for loved ones and many other kind acts.
Need proof? Our favorite for the moment is this guy soliciting photos from around the world to make a special engagement proposal to his sweetheart.
You can also find niche communities to fit specific interests. This helps when you want to promote yourself because your target audience is probably already there. Strengthen your social media marketing strategy by being an active member, posting and commenting.
05. Because Redditors have the best and craziest humor
A group of people get together to count up to a million. This is not a social experiment, it’s a Reddit pastime. The counting games are just one example of the wacky and hilarious fun that Reddit brings out of people. On another occasion, a “test post, please ignore” thread got over two thousand snarky comments. Reddit is truly where some of the strangest and funniest social media trends come about.
If these seem too random for you, don’t worry about it. You’ll definitely crack up at this thread of parents sharing their kids’ funniest moments, or at the Not The Onion Subreddit for news that is too crazy to be true. You’re also sure to discover the latest memes and gifs while you’re at it.
Why Reddit is so popular FAQ
What made Reddit so popular?
There are a few key factors that have contributed to Reddit's popularity. One is its upvote and downvote system, allowing users to quickly and easily identify the content that is most relevant and interesting to them. Another factor is its engaged communities; users are encouraged to participate in discussions, ask questions and share their own thoughts and experiences. Finally, Reddit is simply a lot of fun.