Reddit crashed Monday after thousands of subreddits went private in protest over changes to the company’s API pricing.
The website confirmed that the crash was caused by the subreddits “going dark.”
“A significant number of subreddits shifting to private caused some expected stability issues, and we’ve been working on resolving the anticipated issue,” Reddit spokesman Tim Rathschmidt told The Verge.
The stability issues began Monday morning after thousands of users reported being unable to access content on the desktop and mobile versions of Reddit. One independent site that tracks the status of websites, Downtracker, recorded at least 43,000 user reports of inaccessibility.
Reddit said in a status report that the issues mostly were resolved by noon and that it would continue to monitor the site.
The crash came after more than 7,000 subreddits went private or read-only Monday in response to the application programming interface price change. Reddit announced in April that third-party developers would have to pay 24 cents per 1,000 API requests. API is used by developers to create sister apps for accessibility for entertainment. The change will force many independent developers to shut down their apps. The subreddits will remain dark until Wednesday.
Subreddits are the main way users interact with Reddit. They usually focus on a specific interest and, over the years, some of the subreddits have formed tight-knit communities. The 7,000 subreddits moving to read-only or private translates to a serious loss in user interaction.
The company’s decision to change its API pricing comes after Twitter made a similar decision this year to start charging for API. Twitter received similar amounts of consternation from users who rely on apps created using API. Both Reddit and Twitter have said that certain accessibility apps made with API, like apps that let disabled users better interact with the site, will be allowed to continue operating.