The page, which touts itself as a "free speech 'political' subreddit" with "no agenda" and "few rules," has recently become a breeding ground for NSFW posts featuring porn and hentai (aka anime and manga pornography) — and members are blaming the moderators.
What happened to r/worldpolitics?
On Wednesday, a user on the subreddit r/OutOfTheLoop asked if anyone knew what was going on with r/worldpolitics, which has over 1.2 million members. "It seems everything is a 'mods asleep post' yet it’s a massive subreddit that I wouldn’t expect this from," the commenter noted.
In the responses, most users agreed that the moderators weren’t doing their jobs, which allowed for all sorts of bizarre and inappropriate posts to gain traction. "The top few posts are mostly the exact same image with the exact same title which are posted by karma farmers along with other obviously bait posts that gain thousands of upvotes," one individual remarked.
"People are pissed that the mod team is doing absolutely nothing to combat these posts and in response are just s--tposting because the mods don't care."
According to another user, the channel’s steep decline began a few days ago when a picture of President Donald Trump was continuously being reposted with the text, "upvote this picture of trump looking dumb."
"These posts, aside from not being world politics, angered the users as they break reddit rule number four, which states that 'asking for votes or engaging in vote manipulation' is strictly prohibited," the commenter explained.
"Despite demands from users to mods to remove these rule-breaking posts, the moderators refused. In retaliation, the users determined that if the mods aren’t going to do their job completely, they may as well not do it at all."
That started a trend of members posting random and sometimes vulgar content just to spite the moderators, like one user sharing a photo of a potato with the title, "Since the rules apparently don't matter anymore, upvote this potato."
The commenter added, "It appears that the mods have now accepted their fate as mere bystanders as the sub devolves into flames." Can you say dumpster fire?
Past reddit controversies include the platform's stance on racism.
In 2018, reddit’s co-founder and CEO, Steve Huffman, received backlash over his response to a question about the website’s policies on hate speech. When a user asked, "Is obvious open racism, including slurs, against reddit’s rules or not?" the entrepreneur replied, "It’s not."
He added, "On reddit, the way in which we think about speech is to separate behavior from beliefs. This means on reddit there will be people with beliefs different from your own, sometimes extremely so. When users’ actions conflict with our content policies, we take action."
Huffman concluded, "Our approach to governance is that communities can set appropriate standards around language for themselves. Many communities have rules around speech that are more restrictive than our own, and we fully support those rules."
But following intense criticism, Huffman doubled back on a few of his remarks. "To be perfectly clear, while racism itself isn’t against the rules, it’s not welcome here," he stated.
"There exist repugnant views in the world. As a result, these views may also exist on reddit," he continued. "I don’t want them to exist on reddit any more than I want them to exist in the world, but I believe that presenting a sanitized view of humanity does us all a disservice. It’s up to all of us to reject these views."