No, Reddit didn’t kill 2 popular video downloading bots

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Photo: Olivier Douliery (Getty Images)

Unlike many other platforms, Reddit has earned a reputation for embracing the countless weird and wacky the bots its users have created to run amok on the platform. And while some of those bots have gone to that big Github in the sky, reports that two beloved video downloader bots were getting the ax this week have seemingly taken the plunge.

In a publication published on Monday afternoon, the creator of two bots, aptly named “savevideobot” and “redditsave”, claimed that they have to stop the service after only a few months of operation. The creator also said that someone – we don’t know who – was threatening them with legal action if they refused to comply.

“It has been a great pleasure serving you all over the past few months. However, as they say, all good things must come to an end,” the creator wrote. “The gods of reddit have reached out to us. more that we continue this service. I have to obey or risk a lawsuit. Thank you all for making my fun project what it is today.

According to the creator of the bots, the bots “will no longer be functional in the next few hours”. Almost a day later, however, and the bots still seem to be working. And the site where the bot saves the videos, RedditSave.com, is still online. from Tuesday afternoon. Not only that, but the creator of the bots updated the original post on Tuesday afternoon. to proclaim: “We are back”. A look at the bots’ Reddit history shows they’ve been humming since the the original post was posted on Monday.

While many speculated that Reddit itself was behind the threat of legal action, a spokesperson confirmed to Gizmodo that they in fact had nothing to do with it, but denied. to comment beyond saying that the company is “currently investigating this issue.”

The downloaders in question are just a few of the bots the editors created to fix one of the platform’s most annoying features: non-downloadable content.

Reddit has always given its users the option to download media content in two ways: either externally or locally on Reddit’s own servers. In the latter case, once that image or video is uploaded to a post, the platform doesn’t offer any sort of native way for anyone browsing the site to upload it on their own. This means that over the years we’ve seen creative coders take matters into their own hands, creating bots that would do that download for you. Savevideobot was perhaps the most popular of the bunch, with millions of editors regularly using the service.

These types of bots have been struggling lately. Other popular bots like VRedditDownloader and SaveThisVideo were both unceremoniously suspended in recent months after a series of claims of copyright infringement of creators who discovered their content was uploaded using these tools.

Less than 24 hours after the start of this whirlwind saga, the creator has promised that more information about the supposedly doomed robots would come “soon”. We’ve reached out to them for an update on all of this, but hopefully, those bots are back for good.

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