He’s appeared on TV and in movies, and his work has recently turned starkly political. His name is Donald, and he has an infamous subreddit devoted just to him. This is Donald Glover, of course, who has become the figurehead of r/thedonald, the fastest-growing community on Reddit.
While his fans are trying to reclaim the name, r/thedonald is not to be confused with the notorious r/The_Donald, the infamous breeding ground of the pro-Donald Trump movement online, and the playground of Pepe trolls looking to extoll racist, homophobic, and misogynistic content on Reddit.
With its photo of Donald Trump at the top, you’d be forgiven for assuming that r/thedonald is like just another pro-Trump community mimicking r/The_Donald. It’s definitely not. The subreddit, which has grown by over 20 percent in the last 24 hours, was actually created five years ago. It sports the description, “The place where we discuss in an unbiased manner Donald Trumps great contributions to modern society.”
It’s a little difficult to interpret the tone above, and posts in the community are indeed peppered with pro-Trump memes and photos. But generally speaking, the sub appears to exist for the purpose of pure satire, or maybe as a confusing accidental landing pad for pro-Trump supporters searching for the other r/The_Donald. At time of writing, the community had 16,968 subscribers.
Over the years of r/thedonald’s existence, it seems to have served as a modest thread for some political ranting, but has mostly hosted jokes and content about all kinds of Donalds (like Donald Duck and Donald “Jared” Dunn from Silicon Valley, to name a few). In the last week, however, it has gone completely Donald Glover, as users have posted scores of memes and euphoric fan content devoted the actor and musician. It’s a good look.
One post, titled “The One True Donald,” submitted Monday, had been upvoted over 45,000 times at time of writing. It’s literally just a very cute photo of Donald Glover.
R/thedonald’s sole moderator, th3pudding, appears to be pretty apathetic about what kind of content turns up on r/thedonald. They haven’t been active on the thread in months, but when a user asked them to be banned from the subreddit in 2017 because they loved Hillary Clinton, th3pudding replied, “Lol. I do near 0 moderation of this sub. I just let people talk freely since so many other political subs force opinions.”
This has been working out well for r/thedonald’s ever-increasing fan base. Another post, called “The Donald. Upvote this so that people see it when they Google ‘The Donald,’” is also literally just a really cute photo of Donald Glover and has amassed over 47,000 upvotes so far.
On Monday, user Vespiform posted to the group, “I’m new to this subreddit. Is it all just bashing Trump or is there actual politics and such on here? All I’m seeing is pictures of Donald Glover and Trump-bashing posts so I’d just like to know.”
“This is a Donald Glover fanpage, the Trump memes are just from confusion,” replied user Dank_Shank.
Seems like a good plan.