Build-in-Public – Episode 18 – Google and Reddit Deal

Google recently announced a unique partnership with Reddit, where they are investing $60 million annually to gain API access to Reddit’s data for training AI models. Interestingly, this partnership was disclosed shortly after Google’s antitrust hearings concluded, raising eyebrows about the timing. Over the last few months, Google has significantly increased Reddit’s visibility in their search results, leading to a substantial surge in traffic to the site.

This development brings up several questions. For one, is Reddit’s data a valuable asset for training AI? While Reddit was once beloved by its users, the platform has become controversial due to the influx of spam and toxic comments. Google’s move also echoes past efforts by other companies, such as Microsoft’s ill-fated Tay bot, which was trained on social media and quickly devolved into problematic behavior. With Google facing increasing competition in the AI landscape, their strategy and direction with partners like Reddit will be closely watched.

Key Takeaways

  • Google partnered with Reddit for AI training, spending $60 million a year.
  • Reddit traffic increased in Google’s search results, raising questions about data quality.
  • Google’s AI strategy faces significant challenges and competition.

30-Day Challenge Progress

On day 17, several noteworthy updates have occurred. There’s been a significant partnership between Google and Reddit, where Google is investing around $60 million a year for API access to Reddit’s data. This move aims to train AI models using Reddit’s content. It’s notable how Google’s recent promotion of Reddit content has led to a surge in Reddit’s traffic, boosting its visibility as it nears an IPO.

Interestingly, this partnership was revealed a month after Google’s antitrust hearing ended. Despite the lack of a final decision from the hearings, the timing of this announcement is curious.

From my perspective, it’s baffling why Google would opt to train its AI on Reddit data. A decade ago, Reddit was a beloved platform, transitioning from Digg, but now it seems overrun with toxic comments and spam, particularly in product reviews. This raises questions about the value Google is obtaining from such data.

Reflecting on Microsoft’s bot Tay, which quickly became problematic, there are concerns about the quality outcomes when using Reddit data for training AI. Google’s AI strategy seems rocky, despite having impressive engineering talent. For instance, their new Gemini model, which aimed at inclusivity, faced issues like generating historically inaccurate images.

Google has also struggled with indexing user content and managing the volume of new AI-generated content. This has led to complaints about its search results, which many believe are deteriorating. Competing platforms like Bing and new search engines such as are becoming more appealing to users.

Despite these challenges, Google continues to leverage its brand and partnerships as the default search engine, but their AI strategy appears uncertain. This new partnership with Reddit seems like another step in their tumultuous journey with AI.

Reddit and Google Partnership

Recently, news broke about a partnership between Google and Reddit. In this deal, Google will spend around $60 million a year to gain API access to Reddit’s data to train their AI models.

In the past few months, Google has been heavily featuring Reddit in search results, leading to a significant increase in Reddit’s traffic. Some believe this move could be related to Reddit’s upcoming IPO, suggesting Google’s promotion might be boosting Reddit’s value.

The timing of this partnership announcement is also intriguing, as it came about a month after Google’s antitrust hearings concluded. This has led to some speculation about the reasons behind the timing of the news.

Many are questioning the quality and value of the data Google will receive from Reddit. Comments on Reddit can often be toxic, and there’s concern that training AI on such data might not be beneficial. This echoes past issues, such as Microsoft’s Tay bot, which quickly became problematic when trained on data from social media.

Additionally, Google seems to be facing challenges with its AI strategy. Despite having a strong team and vast resources, they appear to be struggling to keep up with competitors like OpenAI. Recent AI models from Google, like their image generation model, have faced criticism for overcorrecting in attempts to be inclusive.

In the broader context of AI and search, Google is also grappling with the influx of AI-generated content. This has led to changes in how they index content, with reports of delays and decreasing quality in search results. Some of Google’s decisions have been met with criticism from the SEO community.

Despite these hurdles, Google remains a dominant force due to its brand and partnerships. However, the effectiveness of using Reddit data for AI training and the broader implications of this partnership remain topics of debate.

Surge in Reddit Visits

Recently, there’s been a significant rise in Reddit traffic. Google has been driving this increase by featuring Reddit heavily in search results. This surge comes alongside news that Google is spending $60 million annually for API access to Reddit’s data, which they plan to use for training AI models.

In addition, Reddit is preparing for an IPO, and Google’s promotion might be aimed at boosting its profile. This partnership was announced shortly after Google’s recent antitrust hearings, which is interesting timing.

A critical point to consider is the quality of Reddit’s data. The platform has changed significantly over the years, with many users noting an increase in spam and toxic comments. Additionally, Google’s efforts to promote user-generated content on Reddit have led to high levels of spam in product review sections.

These developments raise questions about the value of Reddit data for AI training. There’s also a humorous historical parallel with Microsoft’s AI bot, Tay, which quickly became problematic when trained on social media data. Concerns about similar issues arising with AI models trained on Reddit are valid.

Google’s AI strategy seems unclear, with several recent missteps. Their new Gemini model, for example, has struggled with properly implementing diversity. As Google works to compete with other tech giants like OpenAI and Microsoft, their approach of leveraging Reddit’s data may not be the most effective path to success.

Timing of the Announcement

The announcement of the partnership between Google and Reddit came shortly after Google’s antitrust hearings concluded. It was interesting to see this timing because it seemed intentional. For several months, Google had been driving a significant amount of traffic to Reddit, making it a prominent feature in search results. This unusual promotion aligned suspiciously well with Reddit’s plans for an initial public offering (IPO).

The new partnership agreement, revealed a month post-hearing, indicated that Google would spend $60 million annually for API access to Reddit’s data. Google’s intention to train AI models using this data also raised eyebrows. Many found it peculiar that the announcement was delayed until after the antitrust proceedings were over, hinting at a strategic move to possibly avoid scrutiny.

In summary, the timing of this announcement draws attention to the interplay between major tech companies, their strategic decisions, and the regulatory environment they operate in.

Training AI Models with Reddit Data

Google has announced its collaboration with Reddit, investing about $60 million annually to access Reddit’s API. This allows Google to use Reddit’s vast data to train AI models. Interestingly, this partnership follows a period where Google has significantly increased Reddit’s visibility in search results, driving considerable traffic to the platform.

There are a few concerns about this collaboration. Reddit’s comments have often been criticized for their toxic nature. Many users, including myself, see Reddit’s current environment as less friendly than it was a decade ago. Also, product reviews on Reddit are increasingly filled with spam, raising questions about the quality of the data Google will be using.

Another point to consider is the timing of this announcement, which came shortly after Google’s antitrust hearings concluded. This has led to some speculation about the motives and implications behind the timing and nature of this deal.

Given these factors, it’s unclear how beneficial Reddit data will be for Google in training effective AI models, especially when considering previous challenges with similar approaches.

Concerns over Reddit’s Data Quality

Google has entered into a $60 million a year partnership with Reddit, which allows them API access to Reddit’s data for training AI models. This move raises several questions.

  1. User Experience on Reddit:
    • Many find the comments section on Reddit increasingly toxic.
    • The quality of comments and discussions has declined over the years.
  2. Spam and Low-Quality Content:
    • Product review sections on Reddit are often plagued with spam.
    • This raises concerns about the usefulness of this data for training AI models.
  3. Historical Context:
    • Some draw parallels to Microsoft’s Tay bot fiasco, which was trained on Twitter data and quickly went off the rails.
    • The quality of Reddit’s data might lead Google’s AI down a similar problematic path.
  4. Google’s AI Strategy:
    • Google, despite having some of the best engineers, appears to be struggling with its AI strategy.
    • There are complaints about the quality of Google search results, with user-generated content like Reddit being boosted excessively.
  5. Competitors Making Strides:
    • OpenAI and other companies like Microsoft are rapidly advancing in the AI field, often outpacing Google.
    • Smaller AI competitors and alternative search engines are offering innovative solutions that seem more effective.

In conclusion, Google’s decision to partner with Reddit for data may not be the most beneficial in terms of training high-quality AI models, given the current state of content on the platform.

Comparisons to Microsoft’s Tay

Google’s new AI project with Reddit’s data brings back memories of Microsoft’s Tay bot. Released a few years ago, Tay was designed to learn from interactions on Twitter. Unfortunately, the bot quickly became problematic. In less than a day, Tay developed extremely offensive behavior from interacting with users on the platform.

This outcome highlights the risks associated with training AI on user-generated content from platforms like Twitter or Reddit. If Google isn’t careful, their AI could face similar issues. Tay’s transformation into a toxic entity is a clear example of how AI can go wrong with unfiltered, potentially harmful training data.

With Reddit’s reputation for toxic comments and spam, concerns arise about the quality of data Google is using. Will Google’s AI models become problematic like Tay? Only time will tell. This comparison raises important questions about the strategy and direction of both companies in the AI space.

Google’s AI Strategy and Competition

Google recently announced a significant partnership with Reddit, spending around $60 million each year to access Reddit’s data for training AI models. This comes at a time when Reddit’s traffic has skyrocketed, largely due to Google’s promotion in search results. The timing of this announcement, just after Google’s antitrust hearings, adds another layer of complexity.

The main goal behind this deal is to enhance Google’s AI models using Reddit’s extensive data. However, there are questions about the value of this data, given the mixed quality of discussions on Reddit. This move draws parallels with Microsoft’s Tay bot, which quickly became problematic when trained on Twitter data.

Google’s AI strategy has faced challenges, especially with the rapid rise of OpenAI. Despite having top engineers, Google is playing catch-up. The recent launch of their Gemini model, aimed at more inclusive image generation, has also been controversial.

Compounding these issues, Google is struggling to manage AI-generated content in search results. Their push for user-generated content, like Reddit, has led to an influx of spam. They are also slower in indexing new content, leading to dissatisfaction among content creators and users alike.

Facing stiff competition from other AI-driven platforms like OpenAI and Microsoft, Google’s leading position is being questioned. Smaller models like LLaMA and innovative search engines like are also gaining traction. Despite these challenges, Google’s strong brand and strategic partnerships for default search engine positions keep them in the game.

Problems with Google Search Results

Google has recently partnered with Reddit, paying around $60 million a year to access Reddit’s data. This comes after a noticeable increase in Reddit’s traffic, driven by Google’s search algorithms giving it more visibility. This boosted Reddit as it prepares for its IPO, raising questions about Google’s motivations.

Even more puzzling is Google’s plan to use Reddit data to train AI models. Reddit comments often contain a lot of toxic and spammy content, making it questionable how valuable this data is for AI training.

Google’s search results have been declining in quality. They’ve tried boosting user-generated content like Reddit, but this led to an uptick in spammy product reviews showing in search results. Furthermore, Google’s indexing now seems slower and less consistent, with complaints about new articles not being indexed and older pages being de-indexed.

Moreover, Google’s AI strategy appears mismatched. They seem outpaced by competitors like OpenAI and even Microsoft’s Bing, which has improved significantly with its AI offerings. Google’s recent AI models, like the Gemini model, have also faced issues with inclusivity features that produced inaccurate results.

Finally, Google’s public relations stance is to ignore these issues, sticking to their current plans despite growing criticism. Despite these challenges, Google’s brand and partnerships still give them a massive advantage.

AI-Powered Search Engine Alternatives

In recent times, traditional search engines like Google have faced stiff competition from AI-powered alternatives. These new search engines use advanced technology to deliver more accurate and useful results. Some notable AI-driven search engines include: uses retrieval-augmented generation (RAG) techniques to provide high-quality question-and-answer services. Many users find its accuracy and ability to generate detailed responses better than traditional search engines. It combines AI with a vast database, creating a powerful tool for users seeking precise information.


Microsoft’s search engine, Bing, has significantly improved its AI capabilities. It offers a more intuitive user experience and leverages AI to enhance search accuracy. Despite having a branding challenge, Bing is becoming a strong competitor thanks to its continued advancements in AI.

Open Source Models

Open source models like LLaMA are also making their mark. These models allow users to customize their search experience and contribute to the collective improvement of search algorithms. They represent a community-driven approach to search technology advancements.


Although Google is a dominant player, it has faced criticism over its AI strategy and search result quality. Recent partnerships and AI developments have raised questions about the direction and effectiveness of Google’s AI initiatives.

By exploring AI-powered alternatives, users can find search engines that better meet their needs, offering a fresh perspective on information retrieval in the digital age.

View on Google’s AI Path and Reddit Data

Google’s Recent Traffic Boost to Reddit

Google’s Increased Traffic to Reddit

Recently, Google has significantly increased Reddit’s visibility in search results. This move has driven Reddit’s traffic to about five or six times what it used to be. This boost is closely timed with Reddit’s approach toward an IPO.

The Google-Reddit Partnership

Details of the Partnership

Google has signed a $60 million per year deal with Reddit to gain API access to Reddit’s data to train its AI models. Google’s decision to delay this announcement until after recent antitrust hearings is quite eyebrow-raising.

Concerns About Data Quality

Quality Issues with Reddit Data

The choice of Reddit data for AI training raises some questions. Previously, Reddit was an engaging platform, but many now find the comments section toxic. Product reviews seem overwhelmed by spam. Google’s investment in this data might not add substantial value.

Google’s AI Model Struggles

Challenges in AI Strategy

Google’s current AI offerings, including their new Gemini model, appear to be struggling. Some inclusivity efforts with the Gemini model led to strange outcomes, highlighting their broader issues. For instance, when asked to generate a picture of a Nazi, the model produced a black man in a Nazi uniform, which historically doesn’t align.

Competition and PR Challenges

Rising Competitors

Google isn’t just competing with large entities like OpenAI but also with open-source models and smaller AI competitors like Llama and Perplexity. Bing and Microsoft are also improving their AI offerings, presenting a serious challenge.

Public Relations

Google’s PR team maintains a stance that everything is fine despite multiple reported issues with their search results and AI products. Their reluctance to address these problems publicly could be damaging in the long run.

Experience in Artificial Intelligence

He has been engaged in the field of Artificial Intelligence for about six to eight years. This journey began during the early days when IBM launched Watson, which marked a significant milestone in AI. His experience has given him insights into various AI developments and trends.

His knowledge extends to understanding the impacts and challenges faced by companies like Google. He observes Google’s recent struggles with AI strategy, particularly in light of competition from OpenAI and other small AI companies. This experience allows him to critically evaluate deals, such as the one between Google and Reddit, highlighting potential pitfalls and questioning the value of training AI models on Reddit’s data.

Key Points:

  • Over six years of experience in AI
  • Early involvement with IBM Watson
  • Insight into Google’s AI challenges
  • Critical view of Google’s partnership with Reddit

His expertise enables him to speak confidently about the current state of AI and its future directions, providing a well-rounded perspective on industry dynamics.

Industry Challenges and Search Engine Monetization

Google is experiencing several challenges with their search engine and AI strategies. The search results, which many users and experts find lacking, have been a significant concern. Google’s attempt to handle AI-generated content by promoting user-generated content, such as Reddit, has led to an increase in spam. Complaints about indexing issues are also common, with many articles not being indexed or getting de-indexed.

They’re also facing competition from companies like OpenAI, which have surged ahead with innovative AI models. Microsoft’s Bing is gaining ground with its strong AI offerings, creating further pressure. Google’s leadership seems uncertain about their AI direction, despite having advanced resources and capable engineers.

Google’s recent partnership with Reddit, where they are investing $60 million annually to access Reddit’s API and train AI models, has raised questions. With Reddit moving towards an IPO and Google heavily promoting Reddit content, the timing of this deal is noteworthy. However, some find Reddit’s data quality questionable for AI training due to the toxicity in comments and the presence of spam in product reviews.

This partnership also comes after Google’s involvement in antitrust hearings, sparking curiosity about the strategic timing of the announcement. Despite these efforts, Google’s AI initiatives seem to be struggling to keep up with newer, more agile competitors, underscoring the complex landscape of search engine monetization and AI development.

Published by

John Ward

With nearly two decades of experience in building, growing, and monetizing websites, I share insights from my journey—highlighting what works and what doesn’t. Whether you're new or experienced, there's something here for everyone.