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“People felt like they were pioneers creating community homesteads on the electronic frontier, as Howard Rheingold described it,” says John Suler, the author of Reddit’s chat feature hopes to reintroduce some of that early web spirit.
Chatrooms will be organized by subreddit; only moderators will be able to create them.
Redditors had used all of those—both as places for moderators to hold discussions and as relaxed social spaces for communities.
But Redditors needed new ways to come together, a new medium to talk outside of the community-based posts and threads.
When Lee and the product team began thinking about chat, they took stock of the other chat applications on the market.
There was Slack (for work), Discord (for gaming), and Facebook Messenger (for friends).
Since then, Lee has been the lead product manager on a new feature that will make that possible: old-school, real-time, type-and-go chatrooms on Reddit.
The company has been testing the feature with a small group of communities and plans to roll out to the rest of Reddit at the end of this month.