Reddit is sunsetting coins and community awards

From the u/venkman01 on Reddit’s Product Team:

TL;DR: We are reworking how great content and contributions are rewarded on Reddit. As part of this, we made a decision to sunset coins (including Community coins for moderators) and awards (including Medals, Premium Awards, and Community Awards), which also impacts some existing Reddit Premium perks. Starting today, you will no longer be able to purchase new coins, but all awards and existing coins will continue to be available until September 12, 2023.

Many eons ago, Reddit introduced something called Reddit Gold. Gold then evolved, and we introduced new awards including Reddit Silver, Platinum, Ternium, and Argentium. And the evolution continued from there. While we saw many of the awards used as a fun way to recognize contributions from your fellow redditors, looking back at those eons, we also saw consistent feedback on awards as a whole. First, many don’t appreciate the clutter from awards (50+ awards right now, but who’s counting?) and all the steps that go into actually awarding content. Second, redditors want awarded content to be more valuable to the recipient.

While I never fully understood Reddit Gold as a product (and neither did Reddit it seems), it was much beloved by the community. Gilding fellow redditors comments felt good and was honestly pretty novel at the time. It was also an awesome indicator of high-quality content. Seems like Reddit is likely killing off this feature because gilded content would otherwise identify high-quality content to would-be web crawlers, and Reddit wants a piece of the pie.

I think coins and micro-transcations certainly can be a successful model for creators (see Twitch). But Reddit, has historically never understood their general userbase and has historically never leaned into empowering creators/powerusers. Each year, they shed more and more classic nostalgic features while product inherits tech debt. Coins and Rewards were certainly more useful than RPAN (yikes). Honestly, some of the best features are user-generated, maybe Reddit is making a grave mistake here.