Why is kbin so full of empty stuff?

I'm not asking to be snarky or anything... I'm subbed to plenty of magazines that I enjoy reading.

It's just that the front page has the "random magazines" section, and the top bar is full of a seemingly random list of unrelated magazines... and 99% of what shows up in these two places is just empty. They seem like magazines that were made as placeholders and have been sitting empty for 6 months.

These two spots seem like prime real estate that should be filled with useful subs; or at least that magazines under a certain threshold ought to be filtered out of these locations to keep them relevant.

Or am I missing something?

Blackout avatar

This place is very new still. It will probably take reddit doing some other anti-user policy before you get the numbers. The best thing you can do is share OC and let it build organically.

osarusan avatar

To be honest I'm not saying I want it to grow like Reddit. I like the feeling here. It's smaller, like the old internet.

GeekFTW avatar

Honestly if you see kbin magazines that are just empty and unused (as you said, lots of people have made placeholder magazines during the Redditpocalypse and then it took time to see if people would stick around, or settle on a specific magazine)), check if the owner is awol for more than a month and if so, claim the magazine and set it to delete. Ernest goes in and will clear them out (tho he's a bit behind I assume due to all the work he's doing right now on the software) but it will help with getting the unused ones cleared out. I got well over a dozen of em scheduled to be deleted myself, as well as 10 or so others already deleted.

osarusan avatar

Ahh interesting!

I've seen Ernest as the owner of a lot of those magazines, and I figured that they defaulted back to him if the creator had left or something. Claiming them and deleting them is a clever solution!


None of the communities I actually need ever migrated here; most people just did not care. I still go to reddit for things relating to Japanese residency topics, finances, etc. as it is the only place I know of. I only visit those subs, though.

There are also people like me who post like one thing a year (though I comment much more).

osarusan avatar

Japanese residency topics

You're a braver person than I. The Reddit Japan subs are just far too toxic for me, and several of the mods are monsters.


Sounds interesting. Do you have examples?

osarusan avatar

Of toxicity? Or of the mods being monsters?

I don't have specific examples, since I stopped using the Japan subreddits several years ago. But they are swamps of toxicity. Everyone is mad at each other and seems to hate their own lives. The new users ask the same 3 basic questions every single day, while the old users seem like new users are the only thing they hate more than Japan. The mods are ban happy and will punish people like tyrants for the slightest mistake, and while I sympathize with them for the crap they have to sift through, they themselves are some of the sub's most toxic users. It's just a terrible place.


It's still not perfect, but there were some changes in recent years. The main residents-only sub split into two with different moderation policies. I'm subbed to both. I also think some people generally chilled out more, and the removal of certain trolls also increased. Just my opinion, but I also don't spend nearly as much time there.


I want to post but I ran out of willpower due to other conditions on top of the whole reddit thing. Still meaning to…

But I comment as usual. I see and have the same issues, though I don’t go back to reddit unless I’m specifically searching for something online and it directs there, and I use libredirect to not give direct traffic.

0xtero avatar

As is the case normally with these "exodus" things, most people went back to Reddit after the first month here.

NotTheOnlyGamer avatar

The best possibility is something like I've done. I split my social media time between here, Reddit, Facebook, Threads, and a Mastodon instance that doesn't federate (in addition to being a viewer on YouTube & PeerTube). You can't hold all the people all the time. It's just not feasible. So yes, people going back to Reddit is expected. But it's when they come back and find something they want that's important.


My experience: I initially came here from Reddit and mostly access Kbin via Lemmy instances. I quickly had to make the decision to unsubscribe from most Kbin communities/magazines because unmoderated Kbin magazines were the source of 90% of the spam in my feed. It harms the reputation and makes me hesitant to subscribe to anything on Kbin. I really wish Kbin success but I think it would be greatly beneficial if Kbin went and deleted its inactive communities.

TheArstaInventor avatar

The main problem is actually with users like you and I mean no offense here, people subscribe which is a great start but they fail to post or contribute in ways that can help content and start a discussion.

This post drew attention and people have commented below, but if you didn't post this, the community's last post would have been 2 days ago.

My point is be the change you want to see, if we want Kbin to succeed, yall gotta start posting, not just looking around.

osarusan avatar

The main problem is actually with users like you

Really, you meant no offense by that?

Jesus Christ man. I am active in the magazines that I've subscribed to. I post. I comment. I read. How the fuck is this my fault?

In fact, looking at your profile, I comment more than you. So don't blame me just because I asked the question when you actually have no idea what my situation is.

TheArstaInventor avatar

Well I really didn't look at your profile much so I am sorry if you feel personally attacked, that was not my intention.

My point is, if we all posted rather than saying "it feels empty" (not saying it just for you, saying for everyone in general here), then it would not feel so empty, as I mod some big communities here and I know for the fact that there are MANY lurkers who barely contribute, which is why it feels empty, but it's good to see you being active.

If it feels empty, then we need to take action and be the change we want to see. That is what I mean't and not targeting any individuals here, just saying in general.

No need to involve jesus christ, chill out :)

osarusan avatar

I'm sorry if I read your post the wrong way. Internet tone, and all that.

I agree with you that we need to be the change we want to see. My original post wasn't meant to be a complaint that it's so empty here, as in all of kbin. I was just curious about the empty subs that seem to be getting featured for some reason or another.

TheArstaInventor avatar

No worries! It was a misunderstanding and that happens :)

And I agree with you as for the empty feeling, but with organic growth and encourging more people to contribute, hopefully content increases in kbin.


As I said in a comment elsewhere: In the movie Field of Dreams, the ghost voice says "If you build it, they will come.", but fails to say "Oh yeah, you have to look after it once you've done that. You're gonna need a ride-on mower."

During various exoduses[1] from other social media platforms, people excitedly created accounts and also attempted to re-create the places, magazines as they're called here, that they were familiar with. And then they didn't want to post content in those communities, nor did they want to have to manage them, because they hadn't done that elsewhere.

They expected the content to magically appear as it had done in those other places.

When it did not, they went elsewhere or perhaps back whence they came.

While I am very much guilty of expecting the magical appearance of posts, I can live with what's available here, and Federated from other places. I was self-aware enough to not create any magazines, though. I do not want to buy that mower.

[1]: Exodi would be the Latinate plural. Exodoi would be the Greek. You may now relax.

ThatOneKirbyMain2568 avatar

I'd say it's three different things:

  1. Many of the people who came from the initial Reddit migration left pretty quickly. This was always going to happen. Reddit alternatives are relatively undeveloped and lack the sheer amount of activity that Reddit has, so people were inevitably going to lose interest and leave after the initial rush of wanting to stick it to Spez.

  2. Kbin development stopped for about a month. This was due to the developer, Ernest, having real-life stuff to deal with and thus very little time to work on Kbin. Development has since started back up since then, and you can take a look at the progress over on @kbinDevlog, but that long period of silence led a lot more people to lealve.

  3. The people who are here aren't posting a ton. There are a lot of magazines where threads will get tens or hundreds of votes and comments… when someone decides to actually make a thread. Any social media site is going to have more lurking and commenting than posting, but if all the people who want to see content were to post a bit of their own, many of these magazines would be a lot more alive.

OpenStars avatar

At the time of the Reddit protest, Lemmy was only beta version software, not fully ready for the migration. Whereas Kbin on the other hand was only alpha version. It has come a long way since then, but keep in mind that it started out far behind (Lemmy, and even farther behind Reddit), hence has focused more on foundational aspects than small UI matters such as this. i.e. it's not fully functional even now - for instance, doesn't it still lack moderation tools, and an API that can be used by a third party app? A better way to look at it is perhaps how it is this tremendous project given how it is still so experimental, rather than looking at it from the lens of a finished, fully viable product like Reddit is.

Which in turn does not entice non-technical minded people to join, when they come here from Reddit to evaluate it, and not liking what they see, return. We who are here prefer things this way, but it is not everyone's cup of tea.

And you may enjoy community creation or expansion too, or perhaps you can even write some code to implement this feature that would benefit us all.

ZILtoid1991 avatar

A lot of people came here, then went back to Reddit immediately.


Which was partially because the fediverse wasn't ready for them then. But it is now, the Reddit user spike triggered a lot of ongoing development and raised awareness of what's required to handle a large userbase


i wanted to add my personal experience, as someone who tried kbin and then ended up on lemmy

when learning about fediverse, i was first introduced to kbin. i assumed that kbin was a close match to reddit, and this was why i was being introduced to it. turns out, nope! it also has some microblogging thing? active people? boost vs favourites? i was bamboozled to say the least.

i’m sure the dual-purpose threads + microblogging is good for some, but i’m really, really not into twitter. and i also found it to be confusing when i was tagged in something as to whether i was reading a thread, or a microblog. i.e, kbin wasn’t a good fit. then i discovered most of the actual content i was reading on kbin was being posted from some “lemmy” service? i clicked to find out more and… yeah, i made the switch pretty quickly.

basically, not all of us went back to reddit. i can’t speak for all former reddit users, but one of the detracting points for kbin was the mixed purpose. like, for example, if i was to list places like facebook, twitter, instagram, even mastodon - these are all “people” focused places. you post about people, and the focus is more skewed towards following individual people and trends. if i was to list places like reddit, hackernews, something awful, even… 4chan… - these are “things” focused places. you post about things, and the focus is on following things. lemmy is firmly in the “things” camp, whereas kbin is trying to be both “people” and “things” at once, and so it just wasn’t for me. 🙂

NotTheOnlyGamer avatar

I'm going to present the opposite opinion to yours here. Kbin represents the best way forward for social media, to me. If we can get a working PeerTube integration after Threads federates, I'm all set. It's what Google Plus was supposed to be, it's why I first (as a user) used TweetDeck back in the day. It puts everything in one place again. I was a LiveJournal user back in the day, which was another place like this - communication & community, but individual places for your thoughts. I tried Tumblr for a while and it was close to an LJ replacement.

Everything since then has fractured and fragmented so we have very aggressive echo chambers, but no private places. This might be able to give that back to the users.

I accept that it can feel like drinking from the firehose at the start. It was to me at first too, but I was aware of Lemmy early on, and I was on two Mastodon instances that didn't cofederate. I knew what I was going in for. I stepped back from Kbin when a known tech issue degraded my experience, and it's been fixed. I think the thing is that Kbin allows you to curate your own experience, rather than be tied into doing one thing or another all the time.

I think when Kbin is ready for prime time and when the major issues are fixed, there might be a need to look at the first-timer experience, maybe even a tutorial. Because it's not a beginner focused interface. It's meant for us who want it all back in one place, and accepted the burden of experience that means.

osarusan avatar

I'm with you on this.

I started out at lemmy and moved over to kbin because I liked its versatility. Lemmy just seemed like a left-leaning version of reddit. kbin seemed like a new and interesting to interact over the web.

HeartyBeast avatar

I don’t think you are missing anything. I’m not quite sure what the purpose of the top bar is -it doesn’t really perform a useful function at the moment.

Having it filtered by an activity threshold certainly seems like it could be a good idea


Easy there Skeeter, they ain’t hurtin no one.

osarusan avatar

Are you sure about that? They take up valuable real estate that could be better served promoting active magazines. Having a good portion of the home page filled up with empty links is not helpful at best.


I don’t think they’re preventing active groups taking that space. They’d be displaced if there was something else with activity going on

osarusan avatar

Is that how it works? It doesn't seem like that... the "Random Magazines" section seems truly random. Sometimes I'll find something with posts, it's just that 9 times out of 10 it's an empty magazine with zero activity. And the top bar is far worse than that. I'd say 19/20 of the magazines up there have absolutely zero content.

Honestly if they got bumped out by magazines with activity that would be awesome.

Gordon_Freeman avatar

The topbar has no random magazines, it always show the same magazines (but in random order), at least for me

osarusan avatar

Yeah I think you're right. The order seems random, but it's generally the same magazines for me too. No rhyme or reason to them, and most of them are empty.

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