Reddit is still a mess with r/place begging users to 'never forget what was stolen from us'

The state of r/place after Reddark
(Image credit: Reddit)

In the wake of Reddark, a movement that saw thousands of subreddits go down in protest of monetisation around third-party apps, Reddit's r/place is now calling for reform, through the power of collaborative pixel artistry.

Often referred to as the "Pixel War", r/place is considered a pixel art haven. It's a kind of social experiment subreddit that emerges every now and then, where users can contribute to an expansive digital art board, adding a single pixel every five minutes or so depending on whether their account email is verified. Especially well-coordinated collectives often conspire, plotting intricate takeovers in certain parts of the board to get their message across.

When r/place went online this year, however, things got a little heated over the recent changes to Reddit's third-party app pricing policy. From the get-go on July 20, Reddit users and admins alike have been rampaging across the board with messages of passionate discontent. 

In case you're not in the loop, the recent changes to the third-party app pricing have put admins and devs in a difficult position. With Reddit now charging developers for access to its API, and with pricing potentially reaching $1 per user, per month, many are under extreme pressure to find and sustain income streams to pay for third-party access. 

That means the community’s ability to create the kind of plug-ins and features that many subreddits are built on is now severely limited, and admins from top subreddits with 40 million users and beyond are understandably miffed.

(Image credit: Reddit)

Amid lines upon lines of "Fuck Spez"—Reddit CEO Steve Huffman's username—r/place has been littered with calls for users to "Never forget what was stolen from us."

The official day one timelapse shows some real dedication to the cause, with a great deal of users rallying against the changes in every corner of the board. Germany has taken point at the top of the board, incorporating messages such as "Spez ist ein hurensohn" (Spez is a son of a bitch) into their flag. 

This is likely an attempt to prevent the so-called "Fuck spez void" from running them through, as it has so many other flags.

The void appears to have calmed down for now, with the current state of the board suggesting a truce among users. That's good news for those whose art was being obliterated by the movement, though whether Reddit will listen when the money is now rolling in is another matter.

Here's to all the devs who didn't survive the API apocalypse.


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Katie Wickens
Hardware Writer

Screw sports, Katie would rather watch Intel, AMD and Nvidia go at it. Having been obsessed with computers and graphics for three long decades, she took Game Art and Design up to Masters level at uni, and has been demystifying tech and science—rather sarcastically—for three years since. She can be found admiring AI advancements, scrambling for scintillating Raspberry Pi projects, preaching cybersecurity awareness, sighing over semiconductors, and gawping at the latest GPU upgrades. She's been heading the PCG Steam Deck content hike, while waiting patiently for her chance to upload her consciousness into the cloud.