Reddit tests live-reporting feature

26 Feb 2014

Image via Gil C/Shutterstock

The self-proclaimed ‘front page of the internet’ is branching out into live reporting with its new Liveupdate feature, currently being beta tested with two very different topics: Pokémon and the Ukrainian conflict.

“Liveupdate is a new type of post on Reddit. The ‘reporters’ for a stream can post updates and anyone watching gets sent those updates in real time,” explains a post in Reddit’s changelog.

There’s no limit to how many updates can be posted in a Liveupdate thread, which differentiates them from self-post or comment-based live updates.

For now, the Liveupdate feature is only available to Reddit employees, who can create streams and add reporters to them. The two Liveupdate threads currently in operation are Twitch Plays Pokemon [sic], which provides a live report on a game of Pokémon Red being played by thousands of people at once, and Ukrainian Conflict, which provides live updates and breaking news from Ukraine.

Eventually, Liveupdate will be opened up to allow all Reddit users to create and manage streams and these two examples show the wide-ranging possibilities therein.

Other updates on the cards include the embedding of source media in updates and the addition of pictures, video and comments. Reddit is also working to build a system for reporters to co-ordinate with each other privately, as well as gather reports and feedback from the community.

Already, the Reddit community is providing feedback on the new service in terms of bugs spotted and feature suggestions, and progress appears to be moving quickly.

As with all of Reddit, Liveupdate is open source.

Reddit image by Gil C via Shutterstock

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.