Recently Reddit users, especially /r/The_Donald have been petitioning vigorously for Reddit CEO Steve Huffman to resign. Users have also called for a boycott on the purchase of ‘Reddit gold’. The reasons for this are twofold –
Firstly, Reddit staff are perceived as hostile to one of its most popular and active subreddits. Secondly, whilst he is openly opposed to those who support his own country’s president-elect Donald Trump, Huffman is happy to allow horrific paedophile text chat board on Reddit, including users who claim to work with children and to masturbate over them.
/r/Pedofriends is a text only subreddit hosted on Reddit and open to all. The forum takes advantage of a loophole in the law – text discussion of paedophilia is legal in Britain, the United States and other English speaking countries. The subreddit claims to only allow constructive discussion amongst paedophiles who wish to resist their urges and change their ways. It claims that discussion of children and illegal activities is prohibited. The forum is still sickening so, legal or not, I encourage readers spend no more time there than necessary to verify it is real.
Under Steve Huffman’s leadership Reddit bans Conservative forums, but acts as a haven for paedophiles to discuss how oppressed they feel when searching for child pornography on Google causes legal warnings to appear.
Other topics of conversation include sharing angst about the challenges those members who work with children face in their day to day jobs.
Other topics of discussion include how best to legalise child pornography.
Users of the forum also discuss their opinion that there are, ‘obvious problems’ with the current age of consent system. The remarks are very similar in concept, (if not eloquence) to Peter Tatchell’s remarks in a Betrayal of Youth. The left and paedophilia apology have ever gone hand in hand.
Despite their insistence that they are against discussion of illegal activities, the moderator team on /r/Pedofriends have removed none of these posts. Who are these people?
It is important to note that the posts above are not technically illegal, albeit some of the activities described are. However, all reasonable people should be sickened by them.
I emailed Reddit CEO Steve Huffman, Reddit General Counsel Melissa Tidwell and Reddit Director of Community Philippe Beaudette putting them on notice of the existence of /r/Pedofriends. Of course, I am not the only one. Thousands of Reddit users have tagged Mr Huffman into conversations using his account name /u/Spez. Mr Huffman’s tolerance of the paedophile forums is not popular with the other users of Reddit, who have made ‘Fuck /u/Spez’ a slogan of sorts.
In my email, I put things to the Reddit executives in graphic terms. Amongst other things the email said,
“[…] It is my understanding that there is a public subreddit called /r/PedoFriends and an associated private subreddit called /r/PedoChat. I am told that topics of conversation include the nutritional value of semen. The nutritional value to growing pre-teens.
I am also told you are on notice of the existence of these subreddits and have allowed them to remain. I consider an article about this to be very much in the public interest. Many people feel it is incredible that Steve has such hostility for /r/The_Donald but allows those other subreddits with nary a word.
Given the apparent support of Reddit’s leadership for this minority group I consider you should all receive credit. The proposed headline writes itself – “PedoFriends”. Can I have your preferred press pictures to place in a row underneath? […]”
No response was received, no denial and no action was taken about the subreddit. However, the tracking software I used shows that the emails were read many times.
Of course perhaps for Mr Beaudette there was nothing unusual about this material. He was formerly Director of Community Advocacy at Wikipedia. Wikipedia, of course, has had its own child protection difficulties.
After receiving no initial response, I sent a draft of this article to Huffman, Beaudette and Tidwell. I offered to extend the publication deadline if they wanted more time to respond or to take legal advice. No denial was received.
As well as /r/Pedofriends there is also a board called /r/Pedochat that is private. This is said to have less restrictive rules. As I am banned from Reddit for a previous article, I cannot investigate (and frankly the thought sickens me anyway).
The corporate email addresses for Reddit key personnel are above. Users are encouraged to get in touch and politely explain why the presence of /r/Pedofriends and similar makes them uncomfortable with continuing to use Reddit. It is important to use the utmost courtesy in order to avoid giving Reddit any opportunity to claim victimhood. However it is okay for readers to explain that they do not wish to buy any more Reddit gold and are investigating other social media such as Gab or Voat.
At the end of the day, one thing is very clear. The paedophiles of Reddit are tolerated and harboured by its leadership in the face of widespread outcry. Although there is no evidence that Huffman, Tidwell or Beaudette are themselves attracted to children nor advocates of paedophilia, there are few sites that would tolerate the kind of content on display. In that sense the greatest friends to the paedophile users of /r/Pedofriends are the CEO, Director of Community and General Counsel of Reddit. “Pedofriends” indeed.