Reddit is exploring the idea of bringing more user-generated video content to its online discussion forums, the company has confirmed.
Not much has been determined about this potential new video feature yet – which has not yet been tested, we should note. But we understand that this may involve using TikTok-like video editing tools, including, most notably, the ability for people to “comment” to videos posted by others by adding their own video to another’s.
The ability to combine videos from different people became popular on TikTok through features known as Stitches and Duets, which have since been adopted to varying degrees by TikTok rivals, including Instagram’s Reels and Snapchat’s Spotlight.
In Reddit’s case, however, the goal isn’t necessarily to build out its own TikTok competitor targeting creators, as other major social giants have done, but rather to create a video tool that would continue Reddit’s mission to empower its users. enable them to participate in discussions on topics they care about. Today, many of these discussions on Reddit’s site are written in text, but video responses can add another layer to these online conversations. (To be clear, video is already supported on Reddit’s platform, but video comments – similar to “Stitching” – are not.)
The company will contact various communities, known as subreddits, to determine if they are interested in exploring video in such a way. In particular, it will look at certain communities where it thinks the video feature could be a good product. But those community tests have yet to begin.
“In line with our work to help people engage with the topics that matter to them through social audio, video, text, memes and more, we’re reaching out to a few Reddit communities to see or a new video feature we’re working on is something they’ll find useful and enjoyable,” a Reddit spokesperson confirmed to thenewsupdate. “After receiving feedback from Redditors, we’ll be exploring an initial test for this new feature,” they noted. on.
The possible “comments” feature in the new video project was first discovered by iOS developer Steve Moser. Other video editing tools may also be part of the tests, including those for adding effects, filters, and stickers to videos supported by music, among other things. Some of this functionality was added to the Reddit camera app last November as part of Reddit’s ongoing video effort.
In December 2020, Reddit expressed an interest in expanding further into video after it acquired TikTok competitor Dubsmash. The company shut down the app this year after first working on integrating the startup’s video creation tools into Reddit. As part of that integration, Reddit announced it would be introducing new camera features, including the ability to set a timer and change shooting speeds, use effects, add voiceovers, trim and edit multiple clips. fit, and more. Reddit users today can access these video features through the “new post” tool, then select the video option and choose “camera” to record a video.
Additionally, last summer, Reddit tested a TikTok-esque video feed on its iOS app that, when tapped, would show a stream of short videos in a vertical feed. Users can upvote, downvote, comment, gift a prize or share the video from this feed, then swipe up to see more.
Neither project is directly related to the upcoming video test, which aims to explore a new use case for video on the platform. But the underlying video technology acquired from Dubsmash is said to be involved.
As this product is still at an extremely early stage – not even alpha testing yet – a lot can change. It’s also possible that Reddit’s communities show no interest in testing such a video product and the idea is dropped.
The video feature seems to be inspired by TikTok, which already allows creators to discuss using video comments. And this functionality has subsequently been cloned by other social apps, including Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram. But perhaps video discussions on Reddit align better with an idea suggested by an early 2000s startup called Seesmic (clearly ahead of its time), which once theorized that people would comment on posts, blogs, and other text-based content. by leaving video comments. What is old is new again, it seems.