The karma/voting system on reddit produces a burning hatred within me, it has made me consider leaving reddit a number of times. Reddit itself is a reflection of humanity, that which I most hate. This may lead you to ask the question “why are you there then?” I will answer that question with this statement: “the Internet is sub-par in quality for the most part, boredom lead me here and the karma system has made me begin to wonder why I stay. I stay because there is little that comes close to the information compiled there and little on the web that entertains me. I have too much time on my hands.” That said let me get to the point.
Reddits karma/voting system inspires the online equivalent of attention seeking, people do stupid, outlandish things to procure positive karma. These acts range from posting risqué pictures of themselves naked for strangers to jerk over, to pictures of their animals in poses and situations that have been implied to have occurred naturally when they are obviously engineered. Because we all carry around cameras 100% of the time!
The point here is that people will do anything for karma or upvotes, citation? The whole damn website. Karma/upvotes have this strange perceived value here, much like money in the real world. It is only valued by the individual’s perception of its worth. In the same way that dollar bills are just paper, karma is just a number on a screen. I do not personally understand how people place so much value upon it. They take great risks: risking their personal lives, well being and privacy to obtain it. Karma for me is the greatest evil of the reddit community. Now for the sheer stupidity of it all, karma won’t buy you a car, impress anyone outside of the reddit club, get you a girlfriend, buy you a house or do anything for you really.
Karma/upvotes for many are an ego stroke, increasing a person’s sense of self worth at least but at most it is extremely addictive. I believe that people get the same dopamine rush or “high” that a gambling addict gets or someone addicted to a video game such as World Of Warcraft. To this end users begin to engage in karma seeking behaviour. You may have seen many posts about people saying that reddit takes your soul or is inescapable, well this is quite true. Karma is in effect a drug for some people and I can imagine for others it can be quite a destructive force in their personal lives. I bet the contents of my wallet that without prior responsibilities a lot of redditors would slip into a habit of browsing reddit 24/7 with or without the intent to garner karma.
Now here’s the misanthropy. Are we that weak minded that we require recognition from strangers in the form of a number on a screen to feel any sense of self worth? Looks like we are. Are we so pathetic that we would actively seek this approval from others by posting outlandish and/or popular things in order to get more karma and upvotes? Yes again. Our ego, our narcicism, our materialism, our stupidity and all the worst parts of the human psyche follow us onto the Internet. It’s fucking sad, it really is, and it makes me hate humanity all the more. All our evil comes with us, even on the web and it follows us home.
I’ve seen people go into fits of rage over losing large sums of karma or being downvoted to shit and I think to myself how can one put that kind of value on this thing called karma which in name and nature strays so far from the original concept. Reddit has managed to bastardize this interesting concept and turn it into some sort of commodity. How can we call ourselves intelligent and participate in such ego stroking, narcissistic, attention seeking bullshit?
It is amazing to think that karma and the voting system was originally supposed to bring the best content to the top of reddit. In reddit like any democracy if your opinion, wants or needs don’t align with one of the majorities then you may as well have no vote or opinion at all. My opinion or interests do not matter unless they are shared by a majority, they are not so there is no point of me upvoting or downvoting anything at all. The entire system flawed and open to widespread abuse. It doesn’t do what it is intended to do so I will have little or no part in it. I rarely upvote anything. If I took part in the voting system I would end up downvoting mostly everything. Voting on reddit is pointless for me.
Humanity is still heading down that dark path, corrupting everything it can lay its filthy hands on. The reddit karma system is an extension of the worst facets of society and humanity in general. It is pure 100% concentrated stupidity and it’s Eco-friendly, easily recycled and reused like so many advice animal memes. The reddit karma system is the communities’ greatest evil, worse than the racists, trolls, bigots and everything else.