Reddit

Tired of having to hunt for all that great content the internet has to offer? With a Reddit account you can make it all come to you.

Before you can start the internet browser based service you need to register for a free account at www.reddit.com. You'll need a user name - try your Twitter or Facebook handle followed by the letters "NZ" for a good chance of getting what you're after. Don't use your real name! You'll also need a password and an email address.

Once you're signed in tick the "Remember me" box to save having to log in every time you visit the page. You'll only want to do this if you don't share a personal computer with anyone else or you don't want them browsing the internet under your account.

Reddit, like Twitter, is all about posting short and snappy information for others to read. You can use it to post links to interesting stories you've read online, or even written yourself, and to browse content posted by others. Like Facebook it's a one stop shop.

And, like other social media, there's a few rules;

Don't spam. Don't ask for votes or engage in vote manipulation. Don't post personal information. Don't upload copyrighted material you don't own the copyright for. No child pornography or sexually suggestive content featuring minors. Don't break the site or do anything that interferes with normal use of the site. You can either submit a new link or a new text post by clicking the appropriate arrow on the top right of the page.

If you choose to submit a new link you're required to enter a title to go with it. "The key to a successful submission is interesting content and a descriptive title," Reddit suggests, "is to speak your mind".

Then it's up to you to choose a relevant SubReddit, or category, that ensures your link is suitably categorised and easily found by other Reddit users.

To submit a new text post you are required to enter a title, your text and choose a SubReddit once again. Reddit says. "A title is required, but expanding further in the text field is not." The site has a sense of humour. "Beginning your title with "vote up if..." is violation of intergalactic law."

Now's the time to talk karma. Reddit uses it to measure the popularity of a post. The more votes your post gets the more karma it also receives. The idea is that the great posts rise to the top of the SubReddit, while those voted down sink to the bottom.

You can comment on your own posts to Reddit, and others will also do this. These comment posts are also able to be voted on by the Reddit users. They are also not immune to bringing you karma or stealing it from you. So beware of what you say.

Like other social media it's all about subscribing to what others are posting.

You subscribe by clicking the subscribed button in the top left hand corner of the screen. Before you start looking for the SubReddits you are interested in you are automatically subscribed to a whole load of SubReddits for New Zealand. Don't do anything and you'll see a stream of posts on John Key, The Hobbit and the dairy industry.

From the subscribed button you can filter the SubReddits you're subscribed to through the tabs already presented. Hot, New, Rising, Controversial, Top, Gilded, Wiki and Promoted are the categories. Get used to them because they will help you filter the wheat you're interested in from the chaff you are not.

The most important thing is to have fun, and learn something new along the way.

Need A Nerd

Need A Nerd, 201 Pakowhai Rd, Hastings, Hawke's Bay, 4120, New Zealand