Reddit Pleads for Money

In a strange plea, Condé Nast’s Reddit doesn’t just want users to drive the site’s material, but wants them to fund it as well.
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The user-driven site’s programmer Mike Schiraldi has begged the audience to donate to Reddit because the engineers have no resources to create a better product. So in response, Schiraldi announced the creation of “Reddit Gold,” and asked his followers how much they would pay for keeping the site going. He even calls out Reddit’s revenue, saying it “isn’t great.”

Whenever this topic comes up on the site, someone always posts a comment about how reddit is owned by Conde Nast, a billion-dollar corporation like Time Warner or Cobra, and how if they wanted to they could hire a thousand engineers and purchase a million dollars worth of heavy iron. But here’s the thing: corporations aren’t run like charities. They keep separate budgets for each business line, and usually allocate resources proportionate to revenue. And reddit’s revenue isn’t great.

We’ve heard of non-profit’s asking for donations to keep its content going, but a for-profit company under the umbrella of a large multi-national news organization? It seems like a hard sell. Gawker has pointed out that the users haven’t shown much support for the idea, but one has offered to buy the site.

But desperate times, call for a desperate measure, and if people really want to keep the site going, shouldn’t they chip in? However, if you’re Reddit, you also have to be prepared in the case that no one cares.