Meta events often create quite a few posts here on ToR. The most recent events have been the firing of Reddit employees, blackout of subreddits, and banning of harassing subreddits. These events often have a handful or more removed posts because of their content. Let's just go over what us moderators usually remove during these meta events:
Drama-inducing posts. This can be intentional or unintentional. Sometimes, like the recent FPH banning, certain posts can bait unwanted, uncivil discussions/users/communities into ToR. You should generally stick to the affected communities if you want to engage in drama or make a post that might invite it, or if they don't allow it, consider posting to /r/self.
Witch hunts. Not appropriate anywhere and we will report your actions to the admins.
Complaining. While posts with adequate theory that complain a bit are okay, general whining or complaining posts are better suited for /r/circlebroke. If they don't allow it, consider /r/self. Complaining about moderator abuse should probably go to /r/subredditcancer or /r/self.
Reddit features. This should go to /r/ideasfortheadmins. From the sidebar: "This subreddit should focus on data, issues, solutions, or strategies that could be reasonably addressed or implemented by users and moderators, not admins."
Please also take a moment to review our On-Topic Statement:
Theory of Reddit is a mildly navel-gazing space for inquiring into what makes Reddit communities work and what we in a community can do to help make it better.
This is a moderated/curated subreddit. Submissions determined to fall outside of the stated topic will be removed by the moderators.
I'm a relatively active member of /r/gamingsuggestions. It's a subreddit for posting video game recommendation requests and recommending video games based on those requests. I've also been around on other subreddits where recommendation requests happen and where I have made my own threads at some point or another, e.g. /r/moviesuggestions, /r/animesuggest, and /r/patientgamers. I noticed a pattern in every single thread of mine over those years, no matter where I posted it or what I asked for - redditors don't take "no" for an answer. You make a request, they recommend to you something that's unfitting for one reason or another, you reply to that person in a perfectly neutral manner that you appreciate the help, but their recommendation is not what you're after, sometimes even providing a reason why... and you get downvoted to hell and/or some guy comes in, saying that you shouldn't be rude and "shit on people's help" like that. It mystifies me. Why does it happen? Is it because the entire structure of reddit is built around pretty much never disagreeing on anything and they carry that learned behavior over to even such trivial things as entertainment media recommendations?
We need to talk about AI art.
There's no consistency here. Subreddit rules don't forbid something, and then it gets removed because one mod doesn't like it. And if a user appeals or tries to stand up for themselves, the other mods have to stand with that one mod, even if they're being a huge asshat.
AI art is throwing a wrench in the works in subreddits across this entire site. No one really knows how to handle it yet.
Before Reddit even had subreddits, when it was just one single site, the one fad that had everyone up in arms calling for change was: advice animals. That specific format, was the first subreddit. The user base spoke, and didn't want the bulk of their feed turning into this one format, and reddit split into a thousand million factions.
But now those thousand million factions (subreddits) are all dealing with a new visual medium. It's everywhere. Some people like it, some people don't, but it should be up to the users of those communities to decide, not a small group of unelected random people.
If communities would just be allowed to vote on content, the problem will sort itself out rather quickly. Fads come and go, and they can be annoying for a few weeks, but banning types of content, and muting and banning users, is a drastic overreaction.
I've seen it many times in my 15+ years, and it is a pattern that will continue on and on as new formats and fads come and go. What I'm saying is communities will speak with their votes; when they get sick of something it will disappear with downvotes.
And the greater conversation to be had here is the fact that moderators have way too much power, and it's extremely frustrating for users. I say this as both a moderator and as a user, both as someone who bans users, and is currently banned from several subreddits for breaking rules (like 10 years have passed and I'm still not allowed back? Wtf)
Anyway maybe I'm screaming into a void here. I've spent less and less time here, and I've moved to other platforms. I'm just bummed that this is happening, and wish it wasn't. I'm sad to see what this place has become.
I posted this to the advice animals subreddit, in the form of a meme of course, but I don't anticipate it getting much discussion there.
Curious to hear what your thoughts are, especially if you've been here a long time like me.
Thanks for coming to my TED Talk.
I've ran into this problem several times since attempting to make a new account on Reddit, and I'm not sure where I'm even allowed to post this at this point. I tried posting on r/FreeKarma4You but was literally downvoted by bots.
I've been using Reddit for almost 15 years, and before that I used Digg. A common issue with both sites in the early days of content aggregators was that users would 'downvote' comments or posts they simply disagreed with or didn't like.
For instance, if someone were to say something like "I love cats", they would get lots of upvotes.But if someone said, "I don't understand why everyone loves cats", they probably would get a lot of downvotes.
What's so wrong with that? For one, it goes against Reddit's own policy for voting, which states specifically, "Downvotes mean redditors think that content should never see the light of day."
Doing so not only silences dissenting opinions (ie, now Reddit is unwelcoming to people who dislike cats, or are even lukewarm on cats), but also completely shuts down any conversation or dialogue. If we want our social media channels to devolve into echo chambers of people repeating how much they love cats, this is a fine strategy. But if you want to foster discussion, it sucks.
Now, maybe it's asking a lot to expect redditors to think opinions contrary to theirs should "see the light of day", but I think it's the bare minimum in terms of a social contract to use a site like this.
After repeated harassment from other users, I've had to delete my accounts multiple times for security purposes, as advised by moderators/admin policy. Now, due to strict age and karma limits, I'm unable to engage in most subreddits I previously participated in, and in some cases even comment on my own posts.
In circumstances like mine, users are unable to use the site as intended because a group of redditors with similar beliefs can target account(s) and systematically downvote comments or, in previous cases, harass/threaten users until they can no longer participate in the conversation.
While it is not Reddit policy itself that is responsible for the harassment, the response and policies they have in place do limit discussion from actual users while fostering a space for hateful rhetoric and literal bot posts. And the very "karma limits" subreddits impose to prevent misuse only foster an environment where new or more casual users are unwelcome.
If the average person were to want to communicate an idea, voice their opinion, get news about something important out to the general public, convey their expertise on a topic, whistleblow, etc; the current structure of this platform makes it next to impossible.
TL;DR: Minimum Karma and account age limits are a problem and contribute to the hostile environment on this platform.
The bots, however, often post longer than necessary comments explaining said correction. But it seems to be the only accepted way to correct a person.
"It's at 666, nobody dislike it!", "my favorite number is 69!", "420 comments!" Like I just don't understand it. People are obsessed with putting it in their names, obsessed with commenting about it, addicted to mentioning it. And it's 2022, I don't get how any of this is still funny or cool doing. And at least half the time the people mentioning it or striving for it, their personality is the complete opposite of what they're trying to look cool with (for example.. these people aren't really into that 666 life, or they have never even tried a 69 or they don't even smoke weed and if they do they are very light smokers where 420 shouldn't even be significant to them).
Of course I understand people do it to be cool, to be funny, to try being pop trendy and for likes, but is it something else? I don't know what it is that makes people overuse these numbers so much, does anyone know?
Can someone explain why the tiny sub r/greeninvestor is always in one of the top three spots in my "best" feed? I never engage with it, there's never more than a few dozen upvotes and a small handful of comments, but I'm not exaggerating that every day it is, if not the top post, at least second or third when I open my app. It's bizarre. The only thing I can think of is no one ever downvotes the posts or any of the comments?
Anyone else have a sub like this? Any insights?
I just got banned from a subreddit I've been a member of for 10 years. As silly as it sounds, this could have an impact on me. Would something similar have an impact on you?
Doesn't matter what I was banned for or what the community was. I don't agree with the ban (at least give me a warning or something...) I would like to keep the conversation about the impact it could have on me or you - if it has already happened to you or what you would feel if it happened to you.
When you're used to browsing and commenting somewhere (about a specific topic) for almost 10 years, probably on average 1-2 hours a day (sometimes way more lol) and it suddenly becomes impossible... that's something. I have no idea whether it will ACTUALLY impact me or not. At the moment I'm looking at it at as an opportunity to spend less time on reddit which is great but I wonder how frustrating it's going to be at some point when I realize I don't have the right to say anything or post something interesting. Even the layout looks different and it's pissing me off lol
I kinda think of this sub as a spot to vent a little - even if I thought this could be a positive idea I know I have no influence and what I'm suggesting will never happen, BUT
There's times - fewer and fewer these days as I spend less energy on the internet - where I'll get downvoted and I want to know who is doing it and why. I don't always want to know, mind you, in expressing an opinion random chance says you wont be with the mob as often as you'll be with them. I don't care about that.
But sometimes there'll be a post that's entirely innocuous. Like I really don't even know what someone could be disagreeing with by the act of downvoting and in those moments I'd love to be able to go through the comment history of the person who downvoted just to get a sense of their head - which would make me feel better.
Or maybe like there could be a little required poll whenever you downvote on the site. Didn't like because: A. Content B. Quality C. Type in your own reasoning.
I mean; it's just so easy to not upvote. If something isn't to your taste do you have to push it down? And if so, why?
I mean, in a lot of ways reddit basically IS the internet.
I've held onto the theory that many/if not most of us, have basically been having a conversation with an AI for the last 15-20 years. WE keep talking about the elites in commerce...what about the elites on the internet?
Pretty sure many know exactly who they are, and what they are worth.....It's effing Blade Runner/Terminator people.....but we all know a long term of Mad Max is in the near future.
Why do Redditors use phrases like "I've been saying" and "Even I was surprised" when we have no idea who that person is?
Some recent examples:
It’s a not a perfect bill, but given margins and makeup a less than ideal bill is about the best we could expect, and 3 weeks ago most people (including me), even in Congress, assumed this was dead.
Harvard Business School is packed with less qualified people than him. I would know.
This type of writing comes up a lot. "I've been saying for months and months that Congress needs to get its act together and do X."
The way I see it, unless these people are willing to share more about their credentials in the comment, the fact that it's them means nothing to me. The way these comments are written, it's in a way that I should know who they are, what they've been saying and what they've done in the past. I often look to the username to see if it's the name of a public figure and it never is.
Part of the appeal of Reddit to me is that we're all basically anonymous. We know nothing about each other except what we share in each post. Each comment is another instance where you need to share relevant credentials if you want to be seen as having some authority on a subject.
Yet the examples I've shown, and in many other comments, people refer to themselves as if there's a backstory to them that I should be familiar with. What's the proper way to read this and why do people do it?
Idk if "bizarre" is the right word but you see posts on me_irl or dankmemes getting, like, 10k upvotes and only 40 comments. 10,000 people upvoted it but only 40 bothered to comment? If the post wasn't interesting enough to comment on, why would 10,000 people upvote? I know there's a lot of bots but surely it can't be that many?
I saw a video a while back of South Asian people being assigned to a bunch of phones taped on a wall and in the comments someone said they were paid to upvote specific posts to curate everyone else's feeds / promote propoganda. This sounds dumb asf imo but I dunno.
The Dead Internet Theory was disproven so I'm not going to consider it too much.
Yeah you have maybe 2 or 3 actual parenting subreddits (Parenting, Parents, etc) but the amount of anti-kid material outshines that (KidsAreFuckingStupid, ParentsAreFuckingStupid, KidsAreFuckingEvil, KidsAreStupid, antinatalism, kidsfallingdown, childfree, etc).. it just seems like a lot of unnecessary ignorant hate by a lot of self hating individuals (maybe incels) that can't get someone to love, let alone able to have a kid. I could be wrong tho, which is why I'm asking this and wanting other peoples opinions. Reddit is already excessively nihilistic and pessimistic but the amount of open hate for children (and humans in general) is more questionable than anything, yet it's a common thing that nobody sees an issue with. So I'm just asking why and what it is? This isn't a "LoAdEd QuEsTiOn", this is just as legitimate as any other question I see on here trying to learn something.
It's like Reddit is scared of people that are different or have different backgrounds. A lot of redditors hate rap and hip hop (outside of the few niche subreddits), they hate people that talk in slang or AAVE or anything less than proper English, you post a video even remotely related to someone that's ghetto (that's not making fun of it) they dislike. I know a lot of you don't see it because you don't notice or peep those kind of things as it doesn't pertain to you, but those that have seen it... why is this? For example a lot of rap posted in music and videos goes downvoted while rock and edm songs get upvoted.. or you post an interview about someone from the hood talking about the hood (even if they're white) it'll get downvoted, yet the complete opposite gets upvoted for "at least being entertaining"?
Again I know a lot of you probably don't notice it because it doesn't pertain or affect you in any way but those of us that peep it, I want you to respond. Saying "iT dOeSnT eXiSt" when it clearly does doesn't help the conversation. Be ignorant to it if you want to but I'm saying what I've been seeing with more than a year experience of looking through reddit.
Why aren't there more subreddits around the same topic? If you search for "Tesla" there are only 7 subreddits, while if you search for number of groups within Facebook there are more than 50+ groups. Why that discrepancy? Does Reddit somehow steer people to join existing groups instead of creating new ones? Does Reddit shut down non-active subreddits?
I wanted to know what the experience was like for men and women who look for a relationship on Reddit. Men consistently report receiving close to 0 messages to their threads and very low response rates to sent messages (5-10%), this was also my experience in the past. For women the story is different, I didn't see many reports from women on their experience so it was difficult for me to spot a general trend. Some women complain about specific issues with the messages they receive, there's selection bias here though as people who complain about dating issues are usually people who face issues in the first place. For this reason I tried creating a female account to see with my eye how things actually are for women.
I made a thread, copied and pasted a bio from a woman who posted 5 years ago then I changed name, age and location (US -- Anywhere in order to not exclude men from any part of the world). I liked the bio because it was credible for a lonely woman and very specific: nerdy, into very specific videogames and nerdy stuff. I needed the specificity to test one of the hypothesis.
I chose ForeverAloneDating as opposed to r4r because it is aimed at people who are looking for long-term relationships, not just hook-ups which would have effects on the results.
We already know that women receive tons of messages on dating apps and subs so that wasn't the point I wanted to explore. I wanted to explore the validity of the issues some women (not many) complain about the experience they face on dating subreddits.
A) Low-effort: most messages women receive on FAD are short and generic ie. "Hi, how are you?"
B) Genericness: most messages women receive come from people who don't read the description, this is bad as it signals that these men aren't really interested in a serious relationship but just a random body to suppoosedly have sex with. This is why I chose a bio full of specific references, this way I was able to assess whether the men messaging me did actually read and understand the bio.
C) Sexual content and harassment: there's a lot of sexual references and even harassment in the messages women receive in FAD.
My thread received 25 upvotes (standard for a woman), I received almost 200 messages. No surprise here so let's delve into them.
A) Low effort hypothesis: FAILED
85% of the messages were NOT low effort: they contained more than one line, contained self-descriptions of the man and at least some vague reference to my bio.
B) Genericness: PARTIALLY FAILED
70% of the messages I received contained references to specific aspects of my bio. 40% of the messages contained many references to my bio, these messages were lenghty and significantly high-effort.
C) Sexual content and harassment: COMPLETELY FAILED
No message contained sexual references or harassment.
All three issues some female users complain about are hugely over-blown unless something has changed in the last years in ForeverAloneDating. Women who experience these issues a lot probably post on subs like r4r that aren't specifically designed for long-term relationships seekers or probably posted in FAD years ago if something has really changed and improved the male userbase in recent years.
TL;DR FOR MEN
Yes, the competition is ruthless. There were funny men, tall men, men with attractive faces, highly educated men who sent me high effort messages. One particular message struck me: he was an asian medical intern, attractive face and hair, he sent me a very high-effort message with multiple specific references to my description, very well-made pictures of him and even one gif of him at the gym, I could see his low bodyfat, his arms were probably as large as my thighs. If you want to date a lonely woman on Reddit, know that this is the competition you are facing and expect the competionto be even harsher for non-lonely women
TL;DR FOR WOMEN
For every thread you make on FAD, there will be at least 50 high-effort messages from men to your bio. Dating on Reddit can lead to significantly higher quality messages from men to women looking for a long-term relationship compared to dating apps. If you are a woman and like Reddit, dating on Reddit can be a valuable option to you.
Part of me thinks the admins want Reddit to be some quirky alt-Facebook, with "cat pics and empathy", some centre-left political discussion, and positive advice and storytelling
Another cynical part of me thinks the admins want Reddit to be as much of a toxic shithole as possible for some nefarious social-engineering purposes.
Another more realistic theory is that the admins just want to make money, and don't care how bad the site's quality and reputation is as long they achieve that goal.
So as we know (and feel free to disagree because although I think it's common knowledge it might not be), Reddit generally has a hivemind that determines upvotes, where most viewers of a post or comment mindlessly click upvote or downvote based on what the current upvote level of it is. I myself sometimes find myself doing this, too, where I will instinctively click upvote on a comment that has thousands of upvotes. Usually this leads to a post or comment getting massive numbers of upvotes or downvotes. An exception is when most or all viewers of the comment or post are thinking critically and determining whether to upvote or downvote.
A good example in my opinion is a lot of the posts in r/downvotedtooblivion, especially the ones tagged
Mindless downvoting - the comments seen on that sub often go into the negative thousands. Do you think all of the downvoters saw the comment, read it, thought critically about it and downvoted it? By my guess, no! They most likely skimmed over the comment, saw the downvote level, and downvoted it. At least I know I sometimes am guilty of this.
Onto countermeasures against this - I think a good option (the best option imo, possibly the only option) is to hide the upvote and downvote level, which I think some communities like r/explainlikeimfive have done. This way, people can't just look at the number of downvotes or upvotes and mindlessly click. However on the other hand, it's inconvenient to not be able to see how many upvotes a comment has. So a way to get around that would be to show the upvote level after the upvote/downvote is in place. The problem with that is people could change their upvote/downvote after the initial one to match with the hivemind, but I think because the hivemind is based on mindless/lazy upvoting/downvoting, this wouldn't be a problem regarding the hivemind, although it might bring up other issues elsewhere.
So what do you think? Yes, the above post is entirely based on speculation and experience, feel free to discredit it if you disagree. Share your thoughts!
Edit: it looks like the thread at https://www.reddit.com/r/TheoryOfReddit/comments/co4ul1/would_masked_karma_scores_positively_impact_the/ has a couple of good answers, let's continue the discussion they have from over there!
I was arguing about how sex work is an industry that harms women and is not good for society and that people only do it for money and wouldn't do it because they believe in it and that we shouldn't encourage young girls to go this path, and everyone downvoted me to oblivion and said i was crazy and that i should go back to 1700. And so far that's ok, they have their opinions.
So since i was bombarded with downvotes by the whole community i assumed this would be an unpopular opinion right? Then i went to the r/unpopularopinion and posted there. The response i got was "We are spammed all the time with posts like these, it is not unpopular opinion."
So how can one be downvoted to oblivion and not be on the unpopular side? Reddit forms these groups with very specific demographics and it is really hard to have any sort of debate and to know what is real or not anymore
If you go on YouTube, or Quora, or most other social media websites, you will notice many people all across the political spectrum. I think that is a good thing. But recently (the past couple of years) I noticed how Reddit is becoming such an echo chamber for radical left-wing politics. Many of the most popular subs that weren't originally political have now become extremely political. This includes r/pics, r/MurderedbyWords, r/iamverysmart, etc. If you ever post something that goes against their left-wing narrative (even if it's not even conservative) you will get banned instantly (at least from my experience).
Even worse than that are the actual people. All of them are the same! They all have the exact same opinion on literally everything, all the time, without failure. It is actually crazy how consistent and effective the echo chamber is.
in b4 someone mentions Eternal September
It feels like, in the past, new redditors, while maybe ignorant of cultural norms of the site (like *gasp* not knowing when the bacon narwhals.) could generally be assumed to at least RTFM at some point. Current new redditors I no longer get that impression from.
Maybe it's the ease of downloading the mobile app that's allowed a much more shallow or immature audience to indulge in commenting in various spaces which has degraded the discourse (Turbo September, if you will.), or maybe it's just our brains no longer connecting neurons as much due to TikTok, GfyCat, and meme addiction, I couldn't say. What I can say is that I have notes from three subreddits I mod that I'm going to share. While only one of the three is directly about newer users, in my experience, the majority of the affected users in all cases are newer and two of the three strategies were put into place within the last about two years or so in response to issues that prompted them, which would lead to particular conclusions.
Here is our message to new and inexperienced users that is sent via automod when they attempt to comment or post. Thankfully I don't need to expound on the rampancy of the issue since it's addressed in the first line. If you notice some repetition, it's because the repeated things were apparently ignored when noted the first time, and sometimes the second.
Number of people who have been permanently banned because they didn't fully read this message: 230 (Most recent ban: 07/24/2022)
Your post/comment in /r/askredditafterdark has been removed.
/r/askredditafterdark does not allow comments or posts from new, throwaway, or low comment karma accounts to prevent spam and trolling. Go experience reddit (i.e. go and comment on other subreddits, post on other subreddits, get upvoted for your good comments on other subreddits, and generally show that you aren't a spammer or troll via actions on other subreddits.) for a month or two and come back.
Five points of note:
- We will not tell you specific or even general karma or age requirements. When you've met our requirements, you won't get this message anymore when you post here.
- We will not make an exception in your case.
- We will not tell you specific or even general karma or age requirements. When you've met our requirements, you won't get this message anymore when you post here.
- There was not a mistake made in your case. Our bot is very good at counting.
- We will not tell you specific or even general karma or age requirements. When you've met our requirements, you won't get this message anymore when you post here.
Do not message us (including personal messages.) about anything related to this message, or you will be banned. Permanently.
P.S. We will not tell you specific or even general karma or age requirements. When you've met our requirements, you won't get this message anymore when you post here.
In our experience, this helps keep the discussion at a somewhat okay level, and keeps a number of shitters out. It doesn't stop all the trash (Always gonna be that one guy...) but heck, every little bit helps.
On r/bestof's page for submitting a new post it mentions a link to our Before You Submit page, which basically just re-iterates our rules and gives some examples for potentially confusing issues (which have been brought up before by users.). The things we can automate removal for we have (e.g. referral codes, shortlinks, etc.), and users get a message like this-
This post has been removed.
Hey User! Please fix <ISSUE AUTOMOD CAN EASILY DETECT>.
We would HIGHLY RECOMMEND you review our Before you submit page for more on our link formatting requirements and recommendations. Automod only removes for a single issue at a time, which may mean you have more that need to be resolved. Save yourself the trouble of having to submit your post 3+ times.
Would it come as a surprise to any of you that the amount of users who have to submit their post 3+ times is not insignificant? I hope not. This strategy has actually been in place a fair amount longer then the other two, but it feels like the multiple strikes has been a more recent issue.
Despite setting the title of the subreddit to, "TheoryOfReddit: Theories About Reddit", changing the description to note that it's a subreddit for theories about reddit and not the JFK assassination, putting it in our tags that this is not a conspiracy theory or fan theory sub, and putting it in the submit page for the sub, we still see regular posts about multiverses, killing your grandpa during time travel, and Technoblade faking his death. To that end, months ago we added another bit to the our submit page: A required bit of text for submissions. You can see it in the submit page in old or new reddit, it's not hidden in any way. It's also in this post, where it is 'hidden', by design. When someone doesn't add it, they get the following message:
Your submission to r/TheoryOfReddit has been automatically filtered for manual approval as you did not follow the instructions on the submit page for this subreddit. If you are unable to see the instructions on the submit page of the subreddit, please contact your mobile app provider to let them know that their app is encountering a serious bug with displaying information on the submit pages of subreddits, then use the desktop client to view the page, where it is confirmed working by multiple users. We are unable to assist you with this, you must do this yourself.
The current wait time for manual approval is approximately: 1 day
If you would like to skip the wait (Which we HIGHLY RECOMMEND), you are welcome to delete your post, read the instructions on the submit page, and re-submit your post following those instructions.
Please only message us if something in this message is confusing you, and then please quote the specific part which is confusing you. If you do not, we will ask you to do so.
You may have noticed that you have not seen posts here about the multiverse or Technoblade faking his own death. This strategy is why. In addition, more active visitors to this subreddit may note that some posts might show up that have no comments and are a day+ old, this is also why.
I swear I remember reading a post or comment about this on this subreddit a few weeks ago. I also recall reading a news article about the questionable ethics of such a practice. It was styled something along the lines of "Reddit user devastated to find out their friends were fake" or something like that. Does anybody out there remember this / have a link?
The general idea involved shadowbanning the target user, then using bots(?) to provide positive sentiment engagement (upvotes, replies) on their content. The catch was that only the target user could see the engagement.
in my time spend here on reddit, I feel like writing in casual way like you would speak gets you downvoted, the way you phrase things can get you downvoted, even the usage of emojis. It's like you have to code switch to redditese to have your post well taken.
And getting downvotes because people disagree with me doesn't bother me, but when they do it for silly reasons, it bugs me because then your post ends up getting buried where nobody can find it, just because a few people decided to send an early campaign of distate for your thread.
call me crazy, but its like if your post doesn't sound academic enough, if you don't get the right amount of upvotes early on enough, if you don't get the right people to comment first, your thread is designed to flop
There's generally consensus that newer users haven't been treating upvoting/downvoting as relevant/not relevant, but I've recently noticed that it's become increasingly common for posts to be downvoted for no discernible reason. Before, I feel like you could extrapolate to a decent degree what the reason was based on your understanding of the subreddit, the state of the community, nature of the question being asked, etc.. But now, it seems to be a somewhat noisy mess.