Yakkin' About The Internet is an ongoing series by Whitney Phillips and Kate Miltner. Whitney recently completed her PhD dissertation on trolls; Kate wrote her Masters thesis on LOLCats—yep! Up for discussion today: William Shatner's visit to Reddit, community moderation, and the complexities of "free speech" on the internet.
Whitney: Two weeks ago, William Shatner tweeted with Chris Hadfield, an astronaut stationed at the International Space Station. This resulted in the ENTIRE INTERNET BEING WON by Shatner, at least according to this Reddit thread. Apparently the 81-year-old Shatner got wind of the thread, and promptly created an account. He then proceeded to spend the next [...]
The internet hive mind is scary. Geeks operating together as one Voltron-like force of good or evil is an intimidating kind of deal—and leaving the house, for some Internet people, is equally scary. But getting drunk and hanging out with members of the hive mind isn't actually that bad! Saturday was World Reddit Meetup day, and, to observe, members of the Internet forum Reddit—a wholly owned subsidiary of Condé Nast Digital!—met up at 160 or so locations around the world, including d.b.a. in the East Village.
As cover, I went with my friend Nicole—she's an actual Redditor. We were met by the event's organizer, a burly New Jersey [...]