In what may be the first of its kind in the social media world, the little used and subscribed Football (/r/football) subreddit of Reddit.com was overthrown by the Soccer (/r/soccer) subreddit. Though things seem to have died down, yesterday’s events can only be described as a social media coup.
The argument over “Football” and “Fútbol” will go on for eternity, but I never expected it lead to this. The thuggish Redditors (we’re teasing of course) from the disgruntled Soccer subreddit began their barrage yesterday evening, submitting every link relevant to their sport they could find while simultaneously down-voting any stories relevant to Handegg. With only 143 members frequenting the Football subreddit and Soccer’s laying claim to more than 1,500, it was a quick rout. I mean, honestly, we Americans shouldn’t expect the fans of the world’s most popular sport to rename Fútbol in order maintain its distinction from our own Football. As a commenter on Reddit mentioned, perhaps we should just learn to pronounce their sport with the accent and the affronted /r/soccer subscribers should get in touch with user carlosmiguelp, the lone and inactive moderator of the Futbol subreddit.
Speaking of moderators, this never would have happened if the moderator for the Football subreddit had been around to man his post. He’s another inactive user. This brings up a serious issue: Should Reddit ultimately have some power over its user-created subreddits? An ability to pass on moderator duties in instances like these? We’ll do some investigating as there are certainly plenty of subreddits with defunct moderators, open to some form of gaming or manipulation, not just the Football subreddit. Reddit should take some moderation measures and start governing the few mishaps like these. It would give dead subreddits like Football a chance to thrive while also protecting them from manipulation and containing content unintended for inclusion by their absentee creators.