You asked us anything! Summary of our first Reddit AMA

We recently hosted our first Reddit AMA in the ‘Data is Beautiful’ community. It’s the first time we’ve held a Q&A in this format, on such a large scale and was a great way to reach thousands of people at once who are all interested in data viz. We’ve held several online Q&As and actively encourage our tweeting statisticians to be proactive in their communities; this was a good opportunity to offer honest insight to an already active and thriving network.

Our AMA title read ‘Hi everyone, we’re Matt Jukes and Rob Fry from the UK Office for National Statistics. We create data visualizations and data explorers based on UK official data. Ask us anything!’

…and it’s safe to say we disappointed more than a few redditors who read as far as ‘from the UK Office…’ and thought we were the people behind the TV programme (sorry guys!) so we had several questions along these lines:

office tweet1 office tweet2 office tweet3

office tweet5

We didn’t anticipate questions or draft lines in advance as we wanted it to flow organically and not sound scripted. I think we achieved this with Matt and Rob’s personalities coming through in their responses. We answered over 60 questions in total, although we would’ve loved to have answered more. The two hours flew by and it seemed to go over very well, with over 1,600 upvotes and on the Reddit front page (the top 50 posts on Reddit) for most of the day. The graph below shows we had 11,954 total page views, of which 10,116 were unique.

ama page views

It was a manic couple of hours but there was plenty of constructive conversations, a lot of support and a real buzz on Twitter with people following along.

It’s our first time branching out to this platform and we’re always looking to try new things so long as they prove worthwhile and valuable so we’re going to see what other opportunities the platform can offer, ensuring it meets user needs. The great thing about Reddit is you can reach a highly targeted audience that are already engaged and active around a particular area. This particular subreddit fitted perfectly with the work Rob and Matt are doing and we’ll look to see where else we can tap into existing communities for different areas across the organisation in future. If you missed it, catch up with the full AMA.



Lauren Bradford

Social Media Manager

3 comments on “You asked us anything! Summary of our first Reddit AMA”

  1. Love this, great to see a public sector organisations reaching people in new and different ways. Fantastic work!


  2. Economists don’t even try to micromanage the economy. They just try to aritcifially drive demand in every sector of the economy.They know 1 equation.Y = C + I + G Y = total outputC = consumptionI = investmentG = government spendingThey assume I is fixed. They try to pump up C + G. In their warped little brains, the best possible outcome for the economy is when people spend 100% of their money or when the government does it for them.

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