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Protests broke Reddit hack for useful Google search results—and Google knows it

Protests broke Reddit hack for useful Google search results—and Google knows it

Enlarge (credit: Getty)

Ongoing protests regarding Reddit’s upcoming API price change on July 1 are rattling the Reddit community, but they’re not the only ones impacted. Those who navigate Google’s ad-littered, search-engine-optimized (SEO) results by adding “Reddit” to their query have seen their experience hampered, too. According to CNBC, Google’s aware that its search results need fine-tuning through appendages like “site:reddit.com.” However, Google’s response to this problem fails to address the core reasons people modify their search queries like this: There’s demand for results delivering human (not necessarily influencer) voices and that aren’t listed due to people manipulating Google’s algorithm.

People rely on the Reddit hack for Google search results to avoid things that often float to the top of results pages—websites built on SEO but lack reliable or relevant content. But since the Reddit blackout started June 12 and was followed by other forms of user protest, that trick is less effective. As of this writing, over 2,400 subreddits are still private in protest, according to the Reddark_247 counter on Twitch, while others are read-only, suddenly labeled as not safe for work (NSFW), or dedicated to images of John Oliver.

On Monday, CNBC, citing an audio recording of a company-wide meeting from earlier this month, reported that Prabhakar Raghavan, a Google SVP who heads Google Search, “admitted users are unhappy when employees asked about the Reddit blackouts and their impact on results.”

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