Reddit Updates Privacy Policy, May Focus on Stalkers and Harassment


Reddit, the controversial news and special interest-related social media site, has always been at the head of the class in terms of being transparent with users about its Privacy Policy.

New management is in place, and yesterday they made a very public announcement about how they are changing both their Privacy Policy and User Agreement, both of which go into effect January 29. We give them high marks for announcing the changes ahead of time, and welcoming comment from the Reddit community. From a NY Times reporter:

Many of the changes relate to advertising displayed on Reddit’s official app, Alien Blue, which they acquired in October. The announcement on the revised policies, made in the form of a Reddit post (of course), drew a lot of interest, and over 1,600 comments in under 24 hours. The summary:

The following is a brief summary (TL;DR) of the changes to the Privacy Policy and User Agreement. We strongly encourage that you read the documents in full.

  • Clarify that across all products including advertising, except for the IP address you use to create the account, all IP addresses will be deleted from our servers after 90 days.

  • Clarify we work with Stripe and Paypal to process reddit gold transactions.

  • We reserve the right to delay notice to users of external requests for information in cases involving the exploitation of minors and other exigent circumstances.

  • We use pixel data to collect information about how users use reddit for internal analytics.

  • Clarify that we limit employee access to user data.

  • We beefed up the section of our User Agreement on intellectual property, the DMCA and takedowns to clarify how we notify users of requests, how they can counter-notice, and that we have a repeat infringer policy.

Staff was available to answer questions/comments, and a comment that drew our interest, and the interest of a lot of Redditors in the thread, was the following:


That’s good news. Reddit users are known to spend a lot of time on the site, and share many deeply felt personal opinions. As we saw in last year’s Gamergate disaster, some users ended up being harassed or doxed as a result of saying how they felt about the Video Game industry.

We aren’t about to weigh in on Gamergate, but want to applaud Reddit management for looking like they’ll tackle the problem head on. Balancing free speech with the safety of users has never been easy for a community like Reddit. As Reddit users and internet safety advocates, we hope they get it right.



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