What It’s Actually Like to Be a Reddit Moderator

When you think of Reddit, you probably picture a website full of funny memes and videos. But there’s more to Reddit to see. In fact, Reddit is one of the most popular websites in the world, with millions of users and billions of page views every month.

And behind every subreddit, there are moderators. These are the people who keep the subreddit running smoothly and make sure the content is up to date.

So, what is it really like to be a Reddit moderator?

Reality is how Reddit moderators

Well, I’m glad you asked. For starters, work is a lot of work and can often be daunting. But at the same time, it’s also incredibly rewarding – being able to shape and influence an entire community is a huge responsibility, but also a wonderful one.

In short, being a Reddit moderator is like herding cattle. But it’s also one of the most unique and exciting jobs you can have.

Here’s what I’ve learned as a Reddit moderator…

1. Censorship is not as easy as it looks

I’m a moderator for r/barista, a subreddit for baristas and coffee professionals with over 70,000 subscribers. And believe me, it’s not as easy as it looks.

There are a lot of moving parts to moderating a subreddit. From dealing with trolls and spammers to managing community rules and keeping the conversation flowing, there’s a lot to keep an eye on. And that’s not to mention the fact that you’re constantly juggling competing requirements — from users who want more moderation to those who think you’re being too strict.

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But in the end, it’s all worth it when you see the community come together and build something special. That feeling is what keeps me coming back every day.

I’m glad the r/barista community is a supportive and active place for coffee professionals to connect and learn from each other. But it’s not always easy to get there.

2. You Need To Prepare For The Worst

Being a moderator also means preparing for the worst. Because no matter how well you control yourself, there will always be people who will try to ruin it for the sake of others.

Trolls, spamming, and scams are all too common on Reddit. And while tools are available to help deal with them, they are often not enough.

So as a moderator, you always have to be on tiptoe, ready to deal with any problems that arise. That means learning how to react quickly and effectively, no matter what situation you’re facing.

And be prepared. A lot of reports will come from users who are upset about something, from people being trolled without realizing it to people who are intentionally causing problems. Your job is to find out if there’s really something wrong or they’re just overreacting. From really weird questions to users just trying to stir up drama, you’ll see it all as a moderator.

3. You must be willing to make tough decisions

Speaking of tough situations, moderating a subreddit also means making tough decisions. And some of it can lead to heated debates among your fellow moderators.


For example, how strict should we be with the rules? Should we allow certain topics or types of content in our communities? Should we ban certain users?

These are difficult questions to answer, and there is no right or wrong way to do it. But as a moderator, you must be prepared to make the best decisions for your community, even if it means making people angry.

4. You need to be able to handle criticism

Of course, making tough decisions also means being prepared to face criticism. Whether it’s users who disagree with you or fellow moderators who want to promote their own agenda, moderating a subreddit can become political.

And that means learning to stay calm under pressure and handle any criticism that comes your way. Because in the end, the only thing that matters is what’s best for the community – even if people don’t always like it.


In the subreddit, people ask for advice on how to improve their latte skills. But sometimes, they don’t like the answer they get.

Besides trolling and burning, I also see a lot of people get upset when someone gives them hard love or honest feedback. It’s not easy to tell someone that their coffee or skills aren’t up to par, but sometimes it’s necessary. Usually, these comments are reported to me and I have to take action.

But should you delete honest comments? Or should you let them stand? Either way, you’ll make someone sad. It’s a tough call to make, but as a moderator, you have to do what’s best for the community, even if it means angering some people.

5. You must be willing to learn on the job

Being a moderator isn’t just about making tough decisions, either. It often also means learning on the job and figuring things out as you go.

So, in addition to dealing with trolls and spam, you also need to master the intricacies of Reddit itself — from managing subreddits to using different moderation tools.

And that can be a lot to handle, especially at first. But luckily, there is a great community of users who are always ready to help and reach out to the subreddit moderators with problems.

There are tons of tools and customizations that you add to your subreddit, but it takes time to learn all of them. And the same goes for managing a community. You need to experiment and find what works best for you.

6. Dealing with trolls is part of the job

But while there are plenty of useful tools and resources at the disposal of moderators, sometimes it’s just not enough. Because at the end of the day, trolls will do what they do best — try to spoil the experience of others.

And dealing with them can be one of the hardest parts of being a Reddit moderator. Those determined to create trouble will find a way, no matter what step you take.

That’s why it’s important to stay calm and focused in the face of adversity — because if you don’t, your entire community could be at risk.

With lots of AutoModerator scripts, I can handle most of the trolling and spamming. But sometimes, innocent users get stuck.

7. You need to be able to rest

Moderating a subreddit can be a full-time job. And while it can be incredibly rewarding, it’s important to remember that it’s not all fun and games.

There will be times when the scammers come to you, the pressure is too great, or you just need to put it all on hold. And that’s perfectly fine.

In fact, it is essential. Because if you burn out, you won’t be able to do your job well. And that’s not good for you or your community.

So if you feel like you’re on top, don’t be afraid to rest and recover from burnout. Your community will understand — and they’ll be there when you’re ready to come back.

Last but not least, being a Reddit moderator requires a lot of passion. Because at the end of the day, moderating a subreddit is about making it the best it can be.

It is about creating a safe and friendly space for users to share their thoughts and experiences. It’s about giving them a voice and a platform to be heard.

And that’s making sure people feel like they belong. So if you’re not passionate about your community, moderating a subreddit is probably not the right job for you.

But if you – if you believe in the power of Reddit and what it can do – there is no better feeling in the world.

Censorship Not Just Content

At the end of the day, moderating a subreddit is more than just content moderation. It is also about building relationships and managing the community in general.

And that means learning how to communicate effectively, collaborate on decision-making, and keep the conversation flowing.

In other words, being a moderator is more than simply deleting comments or banning users. It’s about creating a positive and welcoming environment for everyone.

So if you’re thinking about becoming a moderator, remember that it’s not just about technical skills – it’s also about being a good community leader.


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About the author

https://www.makeuseof.com/reddit-moderator-what-its-like/ What It’s Actually Like to Be a Reddit Moderator

Sarah Ridley

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