Reddit just banned over 350k users
For the last few days Redditors have been flocking in droves to the /r/thanosdidnothingwrong subreddit. The reason why? The chance to get banned.
For weeks its users have jokingly called for the sub to ban half of its members in a bid to honour the plot of the infinity wars movie which sees the villain (or saviour dependending on viewpoint) Thanos gather the 6 infinity stones in order to destroy half the universe, thus saving precious resources for those who remain.
This challenge was surpirsingly answered by the moderator known as The-Jedi-Apprentice who confirmed he’d take up the challenge of bringing about the mass exodus. There was only one problem, he had no idea how you mass ban hundreds of thousands of members or even if he’d be allowed to do so. Unfortunately the mod had no solution either to either of these problems, but when you’re a redditor with a question, you simply ask reddit as he did here.
However unperturbed, he then announced just 5 days ago that he’d actually recieved permission to bring about a random 50/50 ban on the 9th of July. Though still yet to provide any clear explanation of how this was to be achieved, the subreddit soon flooded with new subscribers eager to take part in another piece of ‘reddit history’ and recieve a ban.
Members gleefully began posting their pleas to be banned and with all the excitement and activity, the subscriber count soon exploded over the next few days as thousands of new members subcribed every minute, eager to get in on the action. After originally starting off from around one hundred thousand just weeks before it soon reached almost 700k subscribers by the day of the ban.
By this point the subreddit had eclipsed the subscriber of many other major subs including the main Marvel community (392k), along with rival fandom/meme subreddits, /r/empiredidnothingwrong (283k) and /r/prequelmemes who have 645,000 subs at the time of writing which placed the /r/thanosdidnothingwrong subreddit within the top hundred or so subs on the entire site.
On the day of the event, the sub even started to attract some more serious(?) attention as Joe Russo, (director of the infinity war movie himself) posted to the sub personally to share a video of the star man, Josh Brolin (possibly in bed naked). In the short 7 second clip the actor can be seen welcoming the ban with a snap of his fingers, replicating the scene in the movie which brings about the destruction.
As the day drew on users began to post complaining about the state of their F5 keys as they waited for the moment the pages subscriber count would plunge. By this time the theme of marvel posts had long since gone out the window as users sought to desperately post anything they could in the hope of achieving some juicy karma along the way (the meaningless internet points users collect when others ‘upvote’ their posts).
By 17:00 UTC, the torrent of new posts only increased as anxious subscribers began to question whether the ban was even still happening as some members even started to turn on the moderators for their lack of transparency over when the ban would actually take place.
Finally at around 01:00 UTC as most of the world had reached the next day, the announcement came through, the ban had started.
Unfortunately the ban wasn’t quite so instant as the movie and some might have hoped. The news started to slowly come through over the space of 2 hours with users beginning to recieve the mod mail to their inbox informing them of their ban.
Hurrah! the sub was now balanced. There was now exactly half the subscriber count as before… oh wait.
Unfortunately due to the technical setup of the reddit website, the subscriber count was mostly unaffected as banned members are still counted as subscribed. Instead banned users are expected to then unsubscribe themselves, taking quite the sting out of the ban.
It will remain to be seen just how low their subscriber count will go as more member log in but as of writing they have only lost around 100k users, most of which have subbed to the ‘official’ subreddit for the banned, /r/inthesoulstone which have also gained a roughly corresponding 100k members. Perhaps balance has been achieved after all