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Reddit published a new Public Content Policy outlining expected partner behavior

Reddit has announced the publication of its Public Content Policy, which outlines what counts as public content and the expected behavior of partners who gain access to that data. The announcement also details other tools the company set to ensure regulated access to its public content.

Ellie Ramirez-Camara profile image
by Ellie Ramirez-Camara
Reddit published a new Public Content Policy outlining expected partner behavior
Credit: Reddit

This Thursday, Reddit announced the upcoming publication of its Public Content Policy, a policy that is distinct from and complements Reddit's Privacy and Content Policies. The former establishes how Reddit handles user-provided personal and private information, while the latter specifies the rules for the allowed content and behavior on the platform. In contrast, the Public Content Policy sets forth Reddit-endorsed content access and user protection principles. The new policy was motivated by the prevalence of "commercial entities using unauthorized access or misusing authorized access to collect public data in bulk, including Reddit public content."

The Public Content Policy is part of Reddit's efforts to balance empowering responsible non-commercial data use, blocking bad actors from misusing or abusing unauthorized data access, and ensuring that large-scale access is solely granted to trustworthy partners, regardless of whether their purposes are commercial or non-commercial. The policy outlines the expected behavior from partners accessing Reddit data via a public-content licensing agreement. The policy also specifies the kind of data Reddit grants this type of partner access to.

According to the Public Content Policy, Reddit is committed to never selling, distributing, or licensing users' personally identifying information or any other non-public content, including "private messages or mod mail, or non-public account information, such as email address, browsing history, IP address, etc." In turn, partners must respect the privacy of Reddit users, including users' requests for content removal, and Reddit's removal of any content deemed violating the company's Content Policy. Partners are also prohibited from using Reddit data to identify individual users, including for ad targeting purposes. Moreover, partners are not allowed to spam or harass users, use Reddit content to perform background checks, facial recognition, government surveillance, or assist law enforcement agencies to do so. Finally, Reddit is also restricting partner access to content including adult media.

Reddit also published the simplified table (featured above), which clearly explains the different public content access levels the company offers. It specifies further additions besides the Public Content Policy, including creating tools to assist the research community in engaging with Reddit data, such as the r/reddit4researchers or the company's recent partnership with OpenMined. The table also clearly states that data access for commercial purposes will not be granted without a contract. Further, advertisers are invited to manage and track their marketing campaigns via the dedicated Ads API.

Ellie Ramirez-Camara profile image
by Ellie Ramirez-Camara

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