Reddit is a social media community of millions worldwide who share common interests. You can be a member of any subreddit that interests you and share pictures, videos, or text posts, which the members will vote for and start a conversation.
There are various topics to discuss on Reddit ranging from religion and politics to movies and TV shows. Even though Reddit community guidelines prohibit members from harassment or bullying, some people still get away with it and find more imaginative ways to make you a victim.
Reddit invites creepy strangers and bullies to lure teenagers and kids into traps. Guess there are creeps everywhere! And it starts with politeness at first. A stranger might ask you about personal information, like where you live and your interests, but little do you know, he has evil intentions. Strangers might ask for your number, address, high school name, and more to narrow down their victim.
Like other communities on Facebook or Twitter, Reddit invites everyone to create multiple communities based on their interests, with no restrictions.
But, it allows internet users to develop weird subreddits, such as faces in things, Have we met, screaming fish, and countless more. I dare you to go and check those subreddits because they can make you miserable.
On the other hand, Reddit welcomes many internet bullies who start harassing younger adults. So, one may ask: Is Reddit appropriate for children and teenagers? There is no simple answer to this subject, which has been argued for years. On one side, Reddit may be an excellent resource for young people seeking to learn about the world and interact with others. On the other hand, Reddit has a dark side and can be a dangerous place for children and teenagers to hang around.
One of the potential drawbacks of Reddit is online abuse. This can occur in two ways: someone may post personal information about another person on the site or verbally attack that person in the comments section or private messages.
Harassment of this nature can harm children and teenagers, primarily if it occurs frequently. Another risk of Reddit is that it can be a source of graphic or violent content for children and teenagers. This cannot be exceptionally comforting for young people and can significantly influence their mental health.
Is Reddit suitable for children and teenagers? Reddit may be secure if they know the risks and are cautious about what they do and who they chat with on the site. On the other hand, Reddit can be a dangerous site for them if they are not being cautious.
The dark side of Reddit and its subreddits
Reddit is a social website where you can post links to articles or images and vote on them. The most popular submissions appear at the top of the website, and the least popular ones appear at the bottom.
While Reddit can be a great place to discover new content and discuss current events, it also has a dark side. You might encounter a few things on Reddit:
1. NSFW (Not Safe For Work).
This can range from mildly offensive content to outright pornography. If you’re not careful, you might encounter something you weren’t expecting to see.
2. Racist and sexist
Reddit is a haven for hateful speech and bigotry. You might be exposed to offensive material if you’re not careful.
These people post inflammatory or offensive content to cause trouble. They enjoy getting a reaction from others and often target vulnerable people.
Reddit can be a pretty unforgiving place, and if you’re not careful, you could find yourself on the receiving end of some pretty nasty comments.
This occurs when someone publishes your personal information online without your permission. It could be as simple as posting your name and address or more serious, such as revealing your passwords or social security number.
There are creeps everywhere
Is Reddit, therefore, a completely dark and dangerous place? No way, no how. However, before browsing, you should be aware of the risks. You’ll be fine if you’re cautious and use common sense. However, if you are not, you may be in unpleasant situations.
Reddit can be dangerous for adolescents and teens because of its user-generated content and anonymous forum posts. The service has a negative aspect, such as instances of online harassment.
While most of Reddit is harmless, children and teenagers should be warned of the site’s dark side. They should never agree to meet someone they met online in person and should never post personal information online. Parents should also watch their children’s online activities and explain the risks of engaging with strangers on the internet.
Meeting with an online friend, who turns out to be a creep or predator, can be a disastrous experience for anyone, especially teenagers and kids. Most bullies usually target introverted people who have fewer friends and are anti-social. Little by little, strangers try to befriend you and start taking an interest in your activities. Then they might ask you about your next travel destination and share pictures or phone numbers to meet at a specific location.
Are you prone to malware on Reddit?
You don’t get a virus by just going through a few Reddit posts. Reddit is just like Facebook or Twitter; you can share, comment, or read as many posts as you want without the fear of inducing a virus. However, if you ever click on a malicious link on Reddit, you can be on the verge of data theft.
It is common knowledge that threat actors use every social media platform to find their next victims. You should be wary of malicious phishing links and how cybercriminals trap people online. We’ve shared a video on how social engineering attacks can make you and big data companies vulnerable.
Is Reddit safe for my kids?
Reddit is a social media platform where you can submit and vote on content. Several controversies have erupted on the site, including distributing graphic images, harassment, and hate speech. Furthermore, Reddit has a reputation for being a breeding ground for internet trolls and bullies.
On Reddit, there have been numerous reports of people being harassed and bullied.Suicide has occurred in some cases as a result of this. Amanda Todd, a teen, committed suicide in 2012 after being repeatedly cyberbullied on Reddit. Another teenager, Tyler Clementi, committed suicide in 2015 after being outed as gay by fellow Reddit users.
In 2016, Reddit was one of the leading platforms used by trolls to target Leslie Jones, an actress in the Ghostbusters reboot. Jones was subjected to racist and sexist abuse, which temporarily quit Twitter.
On November 23, 2016, shortly after President Trump’s election, Huffman was at his desk in San Francisco, perusing the site. It was the day before Thanksgiving. Reddit’s administrators had just deleted a subreddit called r/Pizzagate, a forum for people who believed that high-ranking staffers of Hillary Clinton’s Presidential campaign, and possibly Clinton herself, were trafficking child sex slaves.
As extensive as it was unpersuasive, the evidence included satanic rituals, a map printed on a handkerchief, and an elaborate code involving the words “cheese” and “pizza.” The Pizzagate subreddit had attracted twenty thousand subscribers in only fifteen days. In its place, there was a scrubbed white page with the message “This community has been banned.”
Despite these controversies, Reddit remains one of the internet’s most popular social media platforms. It is critical to be aware of the risks associated with using the site and take precautions to avoid harassment, bullying, and other forms of abuse.
Like other social media platforms, Facebook and Instagram, Reddit is full of bullies and harassers, and that’s why you have to educate your kids about the downsides of using this platform. Although there are censorship rules and Reddit guidelines for every subreddit, no one can stop a stranger from messaging your kid privately and asking for information about their personal lives.
Besides that, Reddit was one of the top 20 most visited sites in 2021 that allows threat actors to breach data and steal the personal information of millions of Reddit users. Some threat actors on Reddit are cunning and try to partake in most discussions to appear friendly and harmless.
After that, threat actors might send you a message to start a conversation about something completely random. This is how things begin to roll in, and victims end up giving sensitive information to a cybercriminal or threat actor.
How to keep your kids safe on Reddit
There are many things parents should be aware of when it comes to social media to keep their children safe. Reddit is one such website.
But, it’s not just about phone checking or sending them on sleepovers on their own. Here are some suggestions to help your children stay safe while using Reddit:
- First and foremost, ensure your kid’s Reddit account is secure. This means having a strong password that can’t be easily guessed.
- Report any NSFW (unsuitable for work) comments or posts you encounter. This will aid in keeping the site clean and safe for all visitors
- If there are certain users with whom you do not want your children to interact, you can block them
- Finally, talk to your kids about staying safe online in general. Inform them that they should never give out personal information to strangers and that they should always tell you if something makes them feel uneasy
By following these guidelines, you can ensure that your children have a safe and enjoyable experience on Reddit.
The bottom line is Reddit is not safe for kids and teenagers
As we explained a few stories above, strangers can easily trap teenagers and younger adults who have no clue differentiating between a predator or a friendly person online. This is why parents and guardians need to educate their loved ones about internet safety on Reddit. Here are a few things you should tell kids to ensure online safety on Reddit:
- Create a complex password including numbers, unique letters, and symbols. Try to avoid common phrases, vague words, or birth dates.
- Be wary of sharing the information you share on Reddit. Never share your address, email id, phone number, or real name on any subreddit.
- Find out the privacy settings of every Reddit post. Everything you post on a subreddit is public by default. However, you can change the privacy settings based on the topic you are discussing.
- Report anything to the mods (moderators) if something is inappropriate or a member is messaging you privately and getting creepy.
- If you are a parent or guardian of a minor, make sure they are not a part of any sensitive or NSFW subreddit because it can be offensive.
- Block any users trying to ask about your personal information and being overly friendly.
- Discuss online security or privacy. Tell them about the do’s and don’ts of Reddit and tips to stay safe on big online platforms, including Reddit.
- Get parental controls for Reddit that can prevent kids and teenagers from preventing creeps and strangers from getting your information.
User safety measures on Reddit
Reddit has implemented various user safety measures to promote a positive and secure environment for its users. Here are some key safety measures implemented on the platform:
- Content policies: Reddit has a set of content policies that outline what is allowed and prohibited on the platform. These policies include rules against harassment, bullying, hate speech, doxxing (revealing personal information), and illegal activities. Reddit aims to maintain a safe and respectful community by enforcing these policies.
- Moderation: It relies on community moderators monitoring and managing individual subreddits (topic-based communities). These moderators have the authority to remove or take action against posts or comments that violate the community rules. You can also report content to the moderators for review.
- Reporting and blocking: Reddit encourages users to report content or behavior that violates the platform’s policies. You can report posts, comments, private messages, and even entire subreddits. Additionally, you can block other users, preventing them from contacting or interacting with them.
- Automated filters: It employs automated filters to identify and remove certain types of content that may violate the platform’s policies, such as spam, explicit material, or malicious links. These filters help maintain the integrity and safety of the platform.
- Two-factor authentication (2FA): Reddit allows you to enable two-factor authentication, adding an extra layer of security to their accounts. Using 2FA, you can protect accounts from unauthorized access even if their password is compromised.
- Privacy settings: It allows you to customize their privacy settings to control the visibility of their posts, comments, and profile information. You can make their content visible to everyone, restrict it to their communities, or keep it private.
Secure your personal information on Reddit
To help prevent the exposure of personal information on Reddit; you can take the following precautions:
Use an anonymous username: When creating a Reddit account, choose a username that does not reveal your real name or personal information. Avoid using usernames that can be easily linked to your offline identity.
Be cautious with posting personal details: Refrain from sharing personally identifiable information (PII) on Reddit, such as your full name, address, phone number, email address, or financial details. Even seemingly innocuous details can be used to identify you, so exercise caution when discussing personal matters.
Review privacy settings: Reddit provides privacy settings that allow you to control the visibility of your posts, comments, and profile information. Navigate to your account settings and review the privacy options available. You can adjust the visibility settings to restrict access to your posts and comments or even make your entire profile private.
Avoid sharing sensitive images: Be cautious when sharing images on Reddit, especially those containing identifiable or sensitive information. Before sharing images, consider removing or blurring personal details, such as license plates or home addresses.
Think before posting: Before sharing any content or information, consider the potential consequences of its disclosure. Be mindful of the long-term implications and the possibility of your information being accessed by others.
Use private messaging for sensitive discussions: If you need to have private or sensitive conversations with other Reddit users, consider using Reddit’s private messaging feature instead of public comments. Private messages are only visible to the intended recipients and can provide an extra layer of privacy.
Report violations: If you come across any posts or comments that share personal information or violate Reddit’s content policies, report them to the moderators or administrators of the subreddit. They can take appropriate action to remove the content and address the issue.
Reddit and mental health
Reddit plays a significant role in mental health by providing a platform for individuals to seek support, share experiences, and access valuable resources. Here are some ways in which Reddit contributes to mental health discussions:
Supportive communities: There are numerous subreddits dedicated to mental health where individuals can find support and empathy from others facing similar challenges. These communities create a sense of belonging and understanding, allowing users to share their struggles, seek advice, and receive encouragement from others who can relate.
Information and resources: Reddit is a platform for sharing information, resources, and educational content related to mental health. You can find articles, videos, podcasts, and other media that provide insights into mental health conditions, coping strategies, and professional advice. This wealth of information can help individuals broaden their understanding and make informed decisions about their mental well-being.
Peer support and validation: Interacting with others who have gone through similar experiences can provide a sense of validation and normalize one’s struggles. Reddit allows individuals to connect with peers who can offer guidance, encouragement, and perspectives based on their journeys with mental health. This peer support can be invaluable in reducing feelings of isolation and promoting self-care.
Crisis intervention and hotlines: Some mental health-related subreddits have resources and links to crisis helplines and support services. These subreddits may have dedicated moderators trained in crisis intervention and can guide individuals in distress, directing them to appropriate professional help.
Destigmatising mental health: By facilitating open discussions and raising awareness about mental health issues, Reddit contributes to destigmatising conversations surrounding mental well-being. Users share personal stories, challenges, and triumphs, fostering a more accepting and understanding society that recognises the importance of mental health.
How to manage your privacy settings on Reddit
To manage your privacy settings on Reddit, follow these steps:
- Log in to your Reddit account and click on your profile icon located at the top-right corner of the screen. From the dropdown menu, select “User Settings.”
- On the left side of the User Settings page, you’ll find a list of options. Scroll down and click on “Privacy & Security.”
- In the Privacy & Security section, you will see various options to manage your privacy settings. Here are some settings you can adjust:
- To control the visibility of your posts and comments. You can choose between “Everyone” (visible to all users), “Only Me” (private), or “Only My Communities” (visible to users in the subreddits you’ve joined).
- To determine the visibility of your profile information. You can choose between “Public” (visible to everyone), “Restricted” (visible to your approved followers), or “Only Me” (private).
- Enable search engines to index your Reddit profile. You can disable this option if you prefer not to have your profile appear in search engine results.
- After adjusting your privacy settings, scroll to the bottom of the Privacy & Security page and click the “Save Options” button. Your updated settings will be applied.
Navigating Reddit’s content moderation system
involves understanding how to report content, engaging with moderators, and adhering to the platform’s guidelines. Here are some steps to help you navigate Reddit’s content moderation system:
- Reddit has content policies that outline what is allowed and prohibited on the platform. Before engaging with the community, take the time to review the rules. You can find them in Reddit’s Terms of Service or Community Guidelines.
- If you come across content that violates Reddit’s policies, you can report it. Each post and comment on Reddit has a “Report” button, usually represented by a flag or ellipsis (…). Click on it to report the content to the moderators for review. Provide a clear explanation of why you believe the content violates the rules.
- Moderators are community volunteers responsible for enforcing the rules within individual subreddits. You can engage with the moderators if you have concerns about specific content or need assistance. Look for a “Message the Moderators” link on the subreddit’s sidebar or “About” section to send them a private message.
- Modmail is a messaging system that allows you to communicate with the moderators of a subreddit. It can be accessed by clicking on the “Message the Moderators” link on the subreddit’s sidebar or by composing a message to “/r/[subreddit name]/message/moderators” in the recipient field.
- When interacting with moderators or discussing content, maintain a respect moderators are volunteers dedicating their time to maintaining the community. Polite and constructive communication is more likely to receive a positive response.
- If you believe a moderation decision was made in error, some subreddits provide a process for appealing the decision. Follow the instructions provided by the moderators or check the subreddit’s rules or sidebar for information on how to appeal.
How should you engage in a constructive discussion on Reddit?
Engaging in constructive discussions on Reddit can be a rewarding experience. Here are some tips to help you participate in positive and meaningful conversations: Treat other users with respect and courtesy, even if you disagree with their opinions. Avoid personal attacks, insults, or derogatory language. Remember that behind each username is a real person with their own perspectives and experiences.
Stay on topic: Keep your comments relevant to the discussion at hand. Straying too far off-topic can derail the conversation and make it difficult for others to follow or contribute. Consider starting a new thread or finding a relevant subreddit if you have a different topic to discuss.
Provide constructive contributions: Offer thoughtful and well-reasoned insights or opinions. Support your arguments with evidence, examples, or relevant sources when appropriate. This helps foster a more productive discussion and encourages others to engage meaningfully.
Listen and learn: Take the time to read and understand other users’ viewpoints before responding. Listen actively and be open to new ideas or perspectives. Engaging in a constructive discussion involves being willing to learn from others and expand your understanding.
Ask clarifying questions: If someone makes a statement you don’t fully understand or disagree with, ask respectful and clarifying questions to understand their perspective better. This can help facilitate a more productive discussion and prevent misunderstandings.
Avoid generalizations and stereotypes: Avoid broad generalizations or relying on stereotypes when discussing topics. Recognise group diversity and focus on the points discussed rather than making assumptions about entire communities.
Be mindful of tone: Written communication can sometimes be misinterpreted. Take care with the tone of your comments to avoid sounding confrontational or dismissive. Consider re-reading your message before posting to ensure it conveys your intended meaning.
Engage in active listening: Pay attention to the responses you receive and engage in active listening. Respond thoughtfully and directly to the points raised by others. Acknowledge valid arguments or counterpoints, even if they challenge your own views.
Know when to disengage: Not every discussion will lead to a consensus or resolution. If a conversation becomes unproductive, repetitive, or excessively hostile, it may be best to disengage and move on. Sometimes, agreeing to disagree is the most constructive outcome.
Remember that Reddit is a diverse platform with a wide range of perspectives. By approaching discussions with an open mind, respect for others, and a commitment to constructive dialogue, you can contribute to a positive and enriching community experience.
Can Reddit influence society?
Yes, Reddit has the potential to influence society in several ways:
Shaping public opinion: Reddit is a platform where millions of users engage in discussions and share their opinions on various topics. Through the upvoting and downvoting system, certain viewpoints and ideas can gain visibility and influence public opinion. Reddit communities can contribute to shaping the narrative on social, political, and cultural issues, and discussions can have a ripple effect beyond the platform.
Awareness and activism: Reddit communities have been instrumental in raising awareness about important causes and promoting social activism. You can share information, organize campaigns, and mobilize support for various issues. Subreddits dedicated to activism, social justice, and humanitarian causes can serve as hubs for coordination and collective action.
Trendsetting and pop culture: Reddit can have a significant impact on trends, memes, and popular culture. Certain subreddits serve as breeding grounds for viral content that spreads to other social media platforms, news outlets, and even mainstream media. Reddit’s influence on internet culture can shape conversations, influence entertainment, and impact societal trends.
Citizen journalism and breaking news: Reddit has been a source of citizen journalism, where you often share and discuss news stories before traditional news outlets report on them. During significant events or crises, Reddit can provide real-time updates, eyewitness accounts, and analysis from diverse perspectives. This can influence public perception and challenge the narratives presented by traditional media.
Feedback and consumer influence: Many companies, organizations, and public figures actively monitor and engage with Reddit communities. You can provide feedback, suggestions, and critiques that can influence the decisions, products, and services these entities offer. Reddit can be a platform for consumers to voice their concerns and effect change through collective feedback.
Knowledge sharing and education: Reddit communities serve as valuable resources for knowledge sharing, education, and learning. Subreddits dedicated to specific fields, industries, or hobbies allow you to exchange information, ask questions, and learn from experts. This democratization of knowledge can positively impact individual learning and skill development.
Reddit to charge for API access
You can’t trust strangers on any platform
There are numerous risks associated with using Reddit. Several cases of cyberbullying, doxing, and harassment have been linked to the site. Furthermore, there is a steady stream of offensive and sexually explicit content.
As a result, parents must monitor their children’s Reddit activity. They should also educate them on online safety and the importance of not disclosing personal information. Parents can help keep their children safe from the dangers of Reddit by doing so.
Lastly, you can also use a VPN to hide your online blueprints and IP addresses from hackers, government surveillance agencies, and internet service providers. All you have to do is log in to a VPN app on whatever device you use Reddit, connect to a country server, and hide your digital activities.
Frequently Asked Questions
Reddit is secure when it comes to regulations, but being vigilant on all such forums is your utmost responsibility.
Reddit asks you to cushion your security with 2MFA and to change your password every few days. This is the practice you must follow on all platforms.
Reddit is already anonymous, but it still tracks your browser’s cookies and IP address to create a unique profile for each user.
No, if you have deleted your account, your posts will be on Reddit with deleted writing.
The minimum age rating for Reddit users is 13. The app lacks age verification methods.
Personal or confidential information
Sexually-explicit media of someone
Sexual or suggestive content involving minors is not allowed to be posted on Reddit.
Tap the Profile menu button.
Scroll down to the Advanced section.
Uncheck both Content Visibility and Active in Communities visibility, to keep your child anonymous online.
Click Save at the bottom of the screen.