Co-founder of reddit visits OSU

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Posted: Thursday, January 30, 2014 10:57 pm | Updated: 7:31 pm, Mon Feb 3, 2014.

Students packed LaSells Stewart Center Thursday for Alexis Ohanian’s presentation.

Alexis Ohanian, the co-founder of reddit, encouraged students to skip class sometimes and take advantage of these years to embrace their creativity when he spoke at Oregon State University on his book tour Thursday night.

The LaSells Stewart Center was packed.

Ohanian said that while students are in the safety net of college, they should go forth, take their ideas and make something of them.

“This is your chance,” Ohanian said. “You are never going to be more creatively free than you are right now, when you have the fewest responsibilities you will ever have in your life.”

Ohanian and Steve Huffman founded reddit, the social- and entertainment-based website, in June 2005. By submitting content in the form of links or text posts, registered users up-vote or down-vote other posts and interact with other redditers through comment threads. 

Ohanian is the author of “Without Their Permission: How the 21st Century Will Be Made, Not Managed.” He boarded his bus to embark on a 200-stop tour to enlighten the minds of young entrepreneurs. Seventy-seven of these stops are to universities across the nation, including Oregon State University. 

Ohanian wrote the book in order to inspire entrepreneurs to embrace the Internet. Here, he provides tips, shares his ideas and promotes the power of the web.

At each university stop, Ohanian interviews young entrepreneurs from the audience. While visiting OSU, he interviewed Ryan Connolly, a recent OSU grad and co-founder of Tally. 

Tally is a mobile application that lets users send side-by-side images of clothing to their followers or in a private message to certain friends. The app launched a beta release last week to a sorority on campus.

Connolly released the secret app code for the beta launch for the audience to download the Tally application. 

“I really like the eagerness and gung-ho nature of the Tally team,” Ohanian said. “There are Beavers right here who are already doing amazing things on the Internet.”

Ohanian said that on his course to success he came across many “haters” but used the negative criticism to work harder in his pursuit to turn an idea into reddit. He told the audience to embrace the Internet and follow in his footsteps. 

“Alexis made me want to go out and take every idea I have ever had and see if I can make something of it,” said Adam Strength, a senior studying industrial engineering. “He inspired the audience to forget all the people who doubt you and use them as fuel to pursue your idea.”

Courtney Gehring

Greek and clubs reporter

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