Away from the Trump supporter spam and creepy fake celebrity porn, Reddit is still home to uplifting conversations, useful information and weird-arse videos. The key is, and always has been, subscribing to the right subreddits. The Lifehacker team shares our favourites below.
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One of the cardinal rules of engagement on the internet is Don't Read the Comments. But if, like us, you spend the better part of your day scouring the internet for tips on the best way to eat a sandwich or which organisational tool will help you get your chores done, this sanity-saving tactic could be working against you.
In a lengthy post in the official hub for site announcements, the CEO of Reddit, Steve Huffman, has apologised for comprising users' trust in the site by "attempting to troll the trolls" and added that the site will be "taking a more aggressive stance against toxic users and poorly behaving communities". If you're a Reddit user, here's what you need to know.
Android: XDA has released a few versions of its apps over the years, but the recent ones are the most useful yet. With XDA Labs you can browse the forums, download apps and peruse a library of Xposed modules.
The internet gives us all a platform to make our voices heard. That's incredibly powerful, but with that power comes responsibility. That's right, like any citizenship, your internet privileges carry with them responsibilities. "But I'm no troll," you say. That's not enough; there's more to being an upstanding citizen of the internet than just not trolling. Here's how you to embrace the responsibilities of your citizenship and become a model internet citizen.
Q&A website Web Apps brings the novel forum-meets-social-news setup of the very popular programmer site Stack Overflow to the web application arena, providing advanced users of web applications with a forum to ask and answer questions about their favourite web apps.
Commenting on Lifehacker offers a great way for readers to share tips and chat, but for rich, full-on how-to guides and the like, Productive Geek provides a solid forum.
Not long after Lifehacker posted about imminent changes to eBay Australia's discussion boards, we got an email from the company's PR wallahs. The good news? Next week's redesign of the discussion boards will include a general discussion board for non eBay-topics, branded "Community Spirit". That's a welcome development for eBay chat enthusiasts, although only time will tell how closely monitored discussions on that new board prove to be.
Next week, eBay Australia is planning a relaunch of its discussion boards, which will include new personalisation options and some other technical policies. However, the change will also see a number of changes to discussion board policy, including a likely ban on general (non-eBay) discussion on any of the forums. Unsurprisingly, that proposal has proved unpopular with many longtime eBay users, who argue that the change is yet another example of eBay putting short-term profit ahead of community development (an issue that regularly flared during last year's abortive attempts to make PayPal compulsory). Do you think eBay has the right to control what gets discussed on its site, or is it going to far? Share your thoughts in the comments.
Human-powered search site Mahalo launches a familiar-seeming group Q&A forum, Mahalo Answers, with a Google-like twist—having the best answer might just earn you a few bucks from the question-asker. In other words, it's intended to be a cross between the pay-for-answers seriousness of Google's now-shuttered Answers tool, which tilted toward researchers and super-specific questions, and Yahoo's own wide-open Answers. Mahalo is seeding a few hundred thousand "Mahalo Bucks" (worth $0.75 in real dollars, cash-able after accumulating $40) to current Mahalo members and testers for spending on answers. And to prevent fraud and cheap-skating, askers will have four days to pick an answer before other users choose it for them, and rating systems are intended to kill off spammers and griefers. If Yahoo just isn't cutting it for you, or you're looking for a semi-serious answer to a question you're willing to spend a few on, Mahalo Answers might be the place to sound off. Mahalo Answers
Windows only: Browse web forum threads and posts like RSS feeds with Web Forum Reader, a free Windows application. Adding forums you frequent to the app is done through an easy-to-grok wizard, and the program parses through the topics you haven't looked at with better speed than you'd find on often ad-loaded forum pages. You can also have the program track and alert you to changes in certain threads, and load your forums into tabs for quicker navigation. Web Forum Reader is a free download for Windows systems only. Web Forum Reader
When it comes to getting help with computer or nearly any other problem, subject-specific forums can be far more helpful than a Google search. Then again, as with Google, you have to know where and how to look. Twing, a multi-forum search site, does a great job of parsing through the results from hundreds of user-driven forums and gives you the tools to winnow down the multitude of results you're likely to find. You can pull out specific phrases, dates of posting, languages, or only the topics and threads that contain video or pictures, for example, and sign up to be alerted whenever a thread you're following is updated—saving you the hassle of signing up for the forum itself. There are many forum search aggregators out there, but I'm liking how Twing does its job, and with no mandatory sign-up.
Tech support website Satisfaction walks the middle ground between the extensive, but nameless, answers found on community forums and official, but not always extensive, answers from company reps. Covering webapps, gadgets, and desktop applications, Satisfaction has more than 400 companies being discussed, and some of them, including Google, Sandy, Twitter and Microsoft, have actual employees helping to answer questions and troubleshoot. If you ask a new question, Satisfaction emails you when the answer appears, or you can follow the thread via RSS. It's not an all-in-one stop yet, but especially for help with webapps and newer programs, it's a good place to find help beyond the FAQs.