Reddit is rolling out a test design of its website to around 1-percent of users as of April 2 and it may be the company's biggest redesign ever. Of course, the changes may not ever be implemented, given the propensity of Reddit users to decry any and all changes over the past several years. Changes have even resulted in CEO's quitting the job due to persistent nagging and trolling from various users. However, according to sentiments expressed by CEO and co-founder Steve Huffman, it's been a long time coming. In fact, last year, the executive reportedly referred to the current design as something akin to a "dystopian Craigslist."
With regard to the redesign itself, the design and developer crews looked to bring the site into the modern world while maintaining the features, tools, and aspects that really set it apart. Going into that has been pooled feedback gathered by a team of user experience researchers that has been working to determine why some people join but don't actively participate. Reportedly comprised of just two people, that group has also taken a closer look at why some who do visit the site don't ever join. With that feedback, the layout of Reddit's feeds has been given a more media-centric focus, with a more consistent use of white space. Many of the elements have been clarified and separated from the general U.I. and page advertisements so that it's easier to create a new post. That also should make it easier to get information about subscriptions and favorite feeds, in addition to discovering new feeds.
The results are drastic, as shown in the images provided to the source by Reddit and included below. That is likely to draw out at least some criticism from current users. As posited by Reddit head designer, Diego Perez, redesigning the site is effectively "changing the internet." That's an assessment made with consideration for Reddit's ability to draw in all types of users and content, as well as its number of users. The most recent count places that figure at upwards of 1.66 billion users. With any luck, the company will manage to maintain its user base and draw in even larger crowds but that, as is so often the case, remains to be seen. There's no word as to when or if the update will hit the rest of Reddit's users or be brought to the associated mobile app.