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‘Nothing is altering’: Reddit flatly denies report that it would wall off its content material

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The Washington Publish reported Friday that Reddit may lower off Google and pressure customers to log in to Reddit itself to learn something if it could’t attain offers with generative AI firms to pay for its knowledge. However the firm tells The Verge that’s not true. “Nothing is altering,” says Reddit spokesperson Courtney Geesey-Dorr.

The Washington Publish’s report wasn’t simply targeted on Reddit — it’s about how greater than 535 information organizations have opted to block their content from being scraped by firms like OpenAI to assist prepare merchandise similar to ChatGPT. In keeping with the unique report, Reddit is in negotiations with AI firms to get them to pay to make use of its knowledge, and if it couldn’t strike these agreements, it would require logins to see content material. That might have the knock-on impact of stopping Reddit outcomes from displaying up in Google searches.

“Reddit can survive with out search,” mentioned the Publish’s nameless supply.

We obtained a style of what Google with out Reddit may seem like when many subreddits went darkish to protest the corporate’s API pricing modifications — at the moment, many Reddit outcomes took you to personal communities, which was a pain. Appending “web site:reddit.com” to a Google search has turn out to be a well-liked trick for weeding website positioning farms and different attention-seeking web sites out of Google outcomes, and a pressured login would disrupt that.

Whereas the Reddit protests have been largely about how the API pricing modifications would pressure some third-party app builders to shut down their apps, Reddit’s unique announcement in regards to the pricing modifications positioned them as a means to get AI companies to pay for hoovering up Reddit’s knowledge to coach giant language fashions. It wasn’t till later that the affect on app builders became clear. (In my June interview with Reddit CEO Steve Huffman, he mentioned that “we’re in talks” with AI firms in regards to the pricing modifications. Once I requested for extra particulars, he didn’t elaborate additional.)

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