Reddit is absolutely insane in the way they attempt to handle and mitigate spam. The evolution of reddit's position on blog spam and intolerance of anything original has gotten so blown out of proportion.
They have no other choice. I'll hazard the guess that you know hella more about SEO than I do, so feel free to check my ass when I overstate:
- Reddit was designed, from the very beginning, to be an outwardly-facing site. It's a link aggregator. Its whole raison d'être is to index, basically, for its community.
- Reddit has no design features that allow it to parse "good content" from "bad content" the way, say, Google does. It's more of a "Yahoo-type" engine - Reddit's content is built by hand. Want good content, put it in. Want bad content, keep it out. Considering Alexis and Steve basically sockpuppeted their way to having a community, "gaming" Reddit is in its very DNA.
- The implosion of slashdot and the implosion of Digg gave lots of people nowhere to go but Reddit. Meanwhile, the advent of F7U12 cartoons siphoned off a large percentage of angsty teens (and pre-teens) from /b/ to Reddit. Finally, the open graph of Facebook led to cross-pollination all across the Internet with Reddit as its initial vector.
- Add in Obama's AMA. All of a sudden, PR firms are required to pay attention to Reddit. Where Reddit goes, so goes the Internet - and let's be honest, CNN has basically been mining Reddit for its human interest stories for about six years now. So whereas all those geeks used to share Reddit shit on their Facebook to be hip, now everybody grabs shit directly off of Reddit.
... and it's still, at its most basic level, an architecture of sockpuppetry.
SEO and Reddit are like blood and vampires. I don't care how sparkly you are, I don't care how many rabbits you eat, I don't care how much you fight your nature - at a basic, carnal level, Reddit is a fucking spam magnet. Its early community existed despite this, not because of it, and the content it has now exists despite the attempts of the majority of its users, not because of it. Reddit really has become a madrassa for baby SEO jihadis. Each individual little 'tard on there is SEO-ing his way to karma. No wonder that anyone with a modicum of skill at it ends up dominating traffic.
this comment sent this spatula to the top of Alexa's product search.
For three days.
You'd game the system too.
* * *
RE: Steve Martin - was it this link? 'cuz that's not me. otherwiseyep is a clever chap who is unsung entirely too much.