• Reddit previously released NFT collectibles in June 2022
  • It was later followed by Halloween-themed NFTs and collectibles with Super Bowl tie-ins
  • Reddit's latest NFT launch received backlash from the community following its shop outage

After minting nearly 11 million Polygon Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), major online message board platform Reddit launched its third generation NFT collection this week, which reportedly saw an excessive amount of demand not from individuals, but from bots.

Dubbed "GEN 3, the Future Realities Collection," the digital identifier is a limited run of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on the Polygon blockchain.

The excessive demand for the newly launched digital collectibles triggered the shop to experience an outage. However, it seems the reason for the shop's downtime was due to the high volumes of items purchased by bots.

"The Shop will be back online in 15 minutes (but only on iOS and Android for now). We sincerely apologize for the turbulence but you are now free to move about the cabin," Reddit said in a statement released Tuesday.

Bot, short for robot or internet robot, is a software app that runs automated tasks on the Internet, most of the time to mimic human activities on the web, which includes messaging on a large scale, or in this purchasing an NFT.

The reason for the outage came to light after the private NFT alpha group, which uses the Twitter handle Pastel Alpha, admitted to having used bots to acquire a substantial amount of items.

"Even though the site completely died, we managed to hit a good amount before the hour thanks to our custom Reddit monitor by our member @CheekyZoot. No need to guess links 🧑‍🎨Checkouts thanks to our bot partners @orcarobot and @MinTechBots. Pastel on top," the group's tweet read.

The shop outage triggered heavy criticism from community members, many of whom berated the online message board platform for failing to impose CAPTCHAs to restrict purchases.

Following the outage and criticism, Reddit appeared to have restored its shop, and was able to allow collectors to purchase avatars in its newly-launched Gen 3 NFT collection.

"We are pleased to report that we are up and running on iOS and Android, and continuing to monitor the situation closely. To say we appreciate your patience would be an understatement. We're hoping you all will have the Gen 3 Avatar of your DREAMS in your Vault ASAP. Thank you for sticking with us today," Reddit said in an update.

Reddit hasn't explicitly admitted that the bots caused the temporary outage.

Reddit launched its previous NFT collections on the Ethereum scaling network Polygon last June, which showed alien mascots in different themes and styles.

A few months later, the online message board platform debuted another collection. This time, the avatars were Halloween themed, and some had Super Bowl tie-ins, which attracted more than 7.3 million unique wallet addresses.

FILE PHOTO - Reddit app is seen on a smartphone in this illustration taken, July 13, 2021.
FILE PHOTO - Reddit app is seen on a smartphone in this illustration taken, July 13, 2021. Reuters / DADO RUVIC