Over the past decade, Reddit has gone from a simple Digg competitor to a complete replacement for a large portion of the internet’s forum and chat communities.
Today, with over 26 million active users, it’s the go-to social news and discussion platform. If you don’t use Reddit, you’re missing out on a wealth of breaking information and some very interesting conversations.
The good news is, if you’re just recently
joining Reddit, there’s a backlog of millions of posts for you to search
through! Want to know tips for getting started on the keto diet? Reddit’s got
them. Need information on which credit card is the best option for a teenager?
Reddit can help. However, finding exactly what you’re looking for requires you
to know a few tricks.
In this article, let’s go over Reddit’s
advanced search operators and learn how to navigate through Reddit’s search
like a pro.
Keyword Search Operators for
Reddit’s keyword search operators use terms
that tell the text thereafter how to filter results. Using them is the most
advanced way to narrow down your search to the content you’re looking for.
There are currently nine of these, all shown below.
The “title” search operator limits
results to posts where the text thereafter (requiring quotation marks if more
than one word) is found within the title. This can be used as a way to find
entire threads about a particular topic.
- Example: title:”training my dog”
The “author” search operator limits
results to posts made by a specific user. This is not case sensitive.
- Example: author:spez
The “selftext” search operator limits results
to self-posts where the text thereafter (requiring quotation marks if more than
one word) is found within the body. This can sometimes behave strangely when
used with more than one word, even if wrapped in quotation marks.
- Example: selftext:”playstation”
The “url” search operator limits results to
link posts that contain the exact URL thereafter. This can sometimes return a
small percentage of link posts that don’t match the URL.
- Example: url:https://www.smh.com.au/business/consumer-affairs/blown-away-rooftop-solar-pv-installations-surge-by-almost-half-20190414-p51e0u.html
The “site” search operator limits results to
link posts that contain URLs that belong to a specific domain name.
- Example: site:online-tech-tips.com
The “nsfw” search operator allows you to
toggle showing (with “yes” or “1”) or hiding (with “no” or “0”) NSFW posts.
- Example: nsfw:no
The “self” search operator allows you to
toggle showing (with “yes” or “1”) or hiding (with “no” or “0”) self-posts.
- Example: self:yes
The “subreddit” search operator limits results
to posts made within a specific subreddit.
- Example: subreddit:gaming
The “flair” search operator limits results to
posts tagged with a certain flair text.
- Example: flair:news
Boolean Search Operators for
Reddit’s boolean search operators use strict
conditions to limit search results. I’ve noticed that these operators do not
seem to work properly when using Reddit’s new design, so you’ll need to revert
to the old design if you want to make use of these.
The “AND” search operator limits results to
posts that include both terms. This works by default for basic query searches,
meaning you don’t have to use it, but this may be required in advanced cases
where several different operators are used.
- Example: sneakers AND socks
The “OR” search operator limits results to
posts that include either term. You must surround a term with quotation marks
if it contains more than one word.
- Example: pineapples OR mangos
The “NOT” search operator limits results to
posts that do not include the text thereafter. You must surround a term with
quotation marks if it contains more than one word.
- Example: cheese NOT pizza
The best part about Reddit’s advanced search
operators is that they can be used together! By surrounding each operator in
parentheses, you can string together a long set of conditions that can help you
narrow down millions of posts to just a small handful.
Another big tip is to try your search using
both the new and old Reddit designs. For some reason, certain operators seem to
behave differently across each. As noted above, the boolean operators actually
only work while using the old design. While Reddit clearly hasn’t ironed out
all of the kinks in their search feature, there’s no doubt that with the dozen
operators listed above, searching through Reddit is a breeze.
Curious to know how you can use similar tricks with Google’s search? Check out our article on Google search operators.