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Trump's impeachment inquiry is lighting up Reddit

Melody Hahm
·West Coast Correspondent

Reddit, the self-proclaimed “front page of the internet,” has been at the center of online conversations surrounding Congress’ impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.

“Our politics [subreddit] is on fire, no surprise. I think I saw something like 20,000 comments on this megathread. So we have human moderators...Reddit's big, so it's got, like, 50 moderators in it, I think. And they have this megathread going with 20,000 comments,” Reddit Chief Operating Officer Jen Wong told Yahoo Finance in an interview last week.

Privately held Reddit currently has 330 million monthly active users and 100,000 active communities, or subreddits, on the platform.

“Nancy Pelosi” and “impeachment” were the top two trending topics last Wednesday — after the House Speaker announced a formal impeachment inquiry on Tuesday at 5 p.m. ET.

“My favorite thing to see is if you click on Pelosi or impeachment, the first thing you see is, something like 50 or 60 links to different points of view on what is going on with the impeachment. And that's very Reddit and very our politics, which is, ‘Hey, you all should read this. It's a lot to read... and make your judgment on what's going on here. I'm not going to tell you what to think. You can see what the commentary is.’”

“And that's very Reddit. A lot of people come and want to see both points of view, all points of view, and sort it out for [themselves]. And so that's kind of what the community thrives on,” she said during an interview with Yahoo Finance’s Breakouts interview series.

Jen Wong visits Yahoo Breakouts at SubCulture on Sept. 25 2019 in New York. Photos by Gino DePinto
Jen Wong visits Yahoo Breakouts at SubCulture on Sept. 25 2019 in New York. Photos by Gino DePinto

Looking ahead to November 2020, engagement and discussion surrounding presidential candidates can be a signal of mainstream support, but it’s too soon to say who will come out on top.

Entrepreneur Andrew Yang has been wildly successful in understanding the zeitgeist of millennialism, including meme culture and making nerdiness cool (or attempting to), making him a likely hot topic on Reddit.

“I think what Andrew has done well is... I think he understands Reddit and the community and the power of the community, and he's invested in understanding that and making it part of how he communicates. I think other candidates have done that, as well. We saw this in the midterms, where we had a lot of candidates come through. It's so early... I wouldn't even deign to think about how anything now [will be] applied to what's going to happen,” she said.

Melody Hahm is a senior correspondent at Yahoo Finance, covering entrepreneurship, technology and culture. She also hosts Breakouts, an interview series featuring up-close and intimate conversations with today’s most innovative business leaders. Follow her on Twitter @melodyhahm.

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