10 things I didn’t know about Reddit

Posted by amy on August 02, 2007

So I woke up this morning and saw that 7 people had saved my method_missing post to delicious. How can this be? I wondered. Who even reads this blog? We checked our stats and saw a bunch of pageviews, because someone linked to us from Reddit (No, we didn’t submit ourselves. We have two small children, here, people, we don’t have time to go around flogging our blog under pseudonyms. We barely have time to flog … never mind). Anyway, then someone else commented, quite correctly :

This isn’t “10 things you should know”. It’s ten paragraphs, each assigned a number for no reason other than the fact that “X things…” lists are better reddit/digg-bait.

It’s funny, because I had a whole paragraph in the original draft about precisely that. I went back and forth about calling the post 10 things, and I went back and forth about numbering the things, and I dithered about the numbering, and the post took me three hours to write and I had other things to do, so I finally decided that the paragraph about whether to call the post “10 things…” was gratuitous meta-blogging, took it out, and left the numbers in.

I’ve never written a 10-things post before. I’m not a ‘pro-blogger’. I do sometimes read posts like ’10 tips to publicize your blog’ though, because I need money, and therefore I need work, and so one way I can try to drum up Ruby on Rails work is to try to contribute to the community in some useful way, and if you’re going to contribute it helps if people are reading you, at least a teeny bit. Etc. So what the hell, I thought, I’ve been meaning to write about method_missing for a while, I’ll see if I can do it in a 10 things format.

So I wrote out all my thoughts about method_missing, and it looked nothing like 10 things. I reorganized it to make the major points more obvious. I took out some stuff that didn’t belong. I revised. Still more of a meander than a 10 things. More revising. Better structure, but not 10 unrelated things; more like 10 points, each leading to one another. (Hmm, an essay. But the internets don’t like essays! ) Okay, I did my best, I thought, time for bed.

And then I wake up and there we are on reddit, with the harsh light of a tiny amount of publicity showing me up as an obnoxious blogging publicity-hound.

Oh well. 7 people thought the post was interesting and useful enough to save to delicious, so that’s something.

And no, I don’t really have a list of 10 things I didn’t know about Reddit. Just one: I had no idea how successful a tactic it was to call something “10 things…”. Beyond my wildest dreams. Though I don’t think I’ll be doing it again anytime soon. Go ahead, reddit readers, flame away!!

Popularity: 12% [?]

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    1. [...] [update, 9:27 a.m., 8/1/2007: welcome, reddit readers. annoyed at me for calling this post “10 things”? Well, then you’ll really hate me after reading this post!] [...]

    2. Daniel Stockman Fri, 03 Aug 2007 11:18:36 UTC

      If it wasn’t for social bookmarking (del.icio.us/popular, in my case), I would have never encountered such an interesting, well-written blog. Don’t worry about what some random bloke on Reddit might say, trust this random bloke when he says you’re doing just fine, in his opinion. :)

      (Third-person present-tense is fun, he says)

    3. Giles Bowkett Fri, 03 Aug 2007 12:34:34 UTC

      You have to ignore some Reddit comments, sometimes there are great discussions, other times there’s just grumpy people. I had one post on Reddit or Digg where somebody said my post was BS because I didn’t accomodate a particular idea. The criticism was hostile and rude but the point was valid. I incorporated the point into my post and somebody on Digg/Reddit (I forgot which) pointed this out to the original critic. So the original critic’s response to that was even *more* rude and *more* hostile. Sometimes you just need to wait til people calm down.

    4. Kramer auto Pingback[...] 10 things I didn't know about Reddit (and the "10 things" marketing phenomenon) (thirdbit.net) [...]

    5. Mike Jones Sat, 04 Aug 2007 11:22:33 UTC

      Hey I appreciated such a well written and interesting blog post (and sadly enough the title did entice me to actually read it).
      Also FYI I came here from ruby inside and bookmarked it to magnolia.

    6. MilesZS Sun, 05 Aug 2007 12:09:06 UTC

      I came here from RubyInside for the method_missing article, but I could just have easily came here from Reddit, I just happened to read through my feeds first. On any ‘online community’, you’ll have haters. You’ll also have people that think to themselves, “How the hell did I miss this blog before now?” and then click subscribe. Such as me.

    7. [...] [update, 9:27 a.m., 8/1/2007: welcome, reddit readers. annoyed at me for calling this post “10 things”? Well, then you’ll really hate me after reading this post!] [...]

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