Today, Reddit announced a new feature called “Reddit Live,” aimed at de-kludging the useful service during high-activity periods, it looks like.
Reddit Live is a Reddit feature meant to streamline the real-time addition to comment threads. As Reddit grows in popularity and relevance, one of the most common complaints from newer users stems from its often confusing comment threading.
Indeed, for people new to Reddit, comments can be incredibly difficult to follow — and a rapidly growing thread can quickly become incredibly confusing due to the not quite intuitive manner in which comments refresh.
As (like it or not) a lot of news breaks in a fashion on Reddit nowadays, Reddit Live sounds like a neat update — though we haven’t yet seen it in the wild.
A blog post by u/spladug explains:
“reddit live is a new feature of reddit for real-time updates. A reddit live thread’s multiple contributors can post updates, and anyone watching gets sent those updates immediately without having to refresh.”
“Unlike with self-post or comment based live threads, there’s no limit to how many updates can be posted during the course of an event. These live threads exist outside of subreddits and are designed to be submitted, like any other link, to whichever (multiple) subreddits are relevant to the thread. Pictures, video, and more can be embedded in the updates by simply pasting a link.”
Reddit’s blog gives examples of how beta Reddit Live threads have allowed long-term discussions to read in a relevant fashion for Redditors following them:
“This feature has been in semi-open beta for a few months now. We posted about the beta testing of the feature back in February after a couple of threads got popular: A live thread about the conflict in Ukraine that has been updated continuously for nearly five months now, and the breakout hit Twitch Plays Pokemon, which followed an incredible event. Most recently, we ran a live thread of the NBA Summer League.”
Most Reddit users immediately grokked the usefulness of such a feature, as we’ve all experienced the thing of where you are really closely following something and it is hard to trail a cohesive temporal thread. u/Arlunden comments:
“Holy s***balls is this awesome for scenarios where updates are flying through like the Boston Bombing, Gaza Strip Battle, and 9/11. This is much better than EDIT ONE, EDIT TWO, EDIT FIVEBAJILLION. Timestamps are very important and a lot of those old style ‘live update threads’ never put the time of their edits.”