How to get Reddit posts using the Reddit API and Python

Your site visitors are looking for related content, why write when you curate? Here's how to get batches of Reddit post links to embed on your blog or marketing site, using a simple Python script and the Reddit API.

How to get Reddit posts using the Reddit API and Python

Why write when you can curate? 😉

The video below will teach you, step by step, how to use the Reddit API directly (not through a third-party library), in Python. You can use the Reddit API to pull down content for your blog or marketing site. Think: embeddable links to posts related to your site's topic.

If you want more background info on what the Reddit API is, and an overview of how it's used by developers, keep reading! I also hit some of the finer points of Twitter's announced developer platform changes, at the end of the post.


YouTube

Watch the first #short on YouTube

#Short - Calling the Reddit API with Python

Watch the full Tutorial on YouTube

When available, I use affiliate links in my posts.

Watch the second #short on YouTube


What is the Reddit API?

The Reddit API (Application Programming Interface) is a set of endpoints and tools that developers can use to access and interact with the Reddit platform programmatically. The API allows developers to access a wide range of functionality, including retrieving user and subreddit data, submitting and commenting on posts, and moderating communities.

Based on REST principles

The Reddit API is based on REST principles, which means that requests are made using HTTP methods such as GET, POST, PUT, and DELETE, and responses are returned in a standardized JSON format. The API requires authentication using OAuth2, which provides a secure way for developers to access Reddit user data and make changes to the platform on behalf of users.

The Reddit API is designed to be flexible and customizable, allowing developers to create a wide range of applications and integrations with the platform. Some common uses of the Reddit API include building Reddit bots, creating custom dashboards and analytics tools, and integrating Reddit data with other applications and services.


How developer access works

How to get a Reddit API key YouTube short

How do you get and API key?

The easiest way to answer this question is to watch the YouTube video 👆. But here's a basic overview.

To use the Reddit API, developers must first register their application with Reddit and obtain a client ID and client secret. They can then use these credentials to authenticate their application and make requests to the API. The API is well-documented and offers a range of tools and resources for developers, including client libraries in a variety of programming languages, sample code, and a developer community for support and collaboration.

The praw library, an alternative

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In the video, we hack directly into the Reddit API... well, not really hack, we just figure out a way to search the entire Reddit site, not just a subreddit, which is what the docs make you think is all that's possible.

But if you're looking for a less-involved way to ping the Reddit API, you can try the the praw Python library.

The praw library is a Python wrapper for the Reddit API, which allows developers to interact with the Reddit platform programmatically. The name "praw" stands for "Python Reddit API Wrapper".

What can you do with the praw library?

With praw, developers can perform a wide range of operations on Reddit, including retrieving user and subreddit data, submitting and commenting on posts, and moderating communities. The library is designed to be easy to use and flexible, and offers a wide range of functionality that can be customized to meet specific needs.

One of the key features of praw is its ability to handle authentication with Reddit using OAuth2. This allows developers to securely access Reddit user data and make changes to the platform on behalf of users. praw also includes a number of tools and resources for developers, including a comprehensive documentation, a range of examples, and an active community of developers who provide support and guidance.

Overall, praw is a powerful and versatile tool for working with the Reddit platform, and is widely used by developers to create a wide range of applications and integrations with Reddit.


Reddit API FAQ

Here are some common questions and answers about the Reddit API:

What is the Reddit API?

The Reddit API is a set of tools and guidelines that allow developers to interact with Reddit's data and functionality programmatically.

What programming languages can be used to interact with the Reddit API?

The Reddit API can be used with any programming language that can make HTTP requests and parse JSON data.

What authentication method does the Reddit API use?

The Reddit API uses OAuth2 authentication, which allows developers to access a user's Reddit account without requiring the user to share their password with the developer.

What types of data can be accessed with the Reddit API?

The Reddit API provides access to a wide range of data on Reddit, including posts, comments, subreddits, and user accounts.

How does rate limiting work with the Reddit API?

The Reddit API uses rate limiting to prevent abuse and ensure fair usage. Requests to the API are limited based on the user's rate limit tier, which depends on the user's account type and usage history.

Are there any limitations or restrictions on using the Reddit API?

Yes, there are several limitations and restrictions on using the Reddit API, including rate limits, access restrictions, and content policies. Developers should review the API documentation and terms of use before using the API in their applications.

What types of applications can be built using the Reddit API?

The Reddit API can be used to build a wide range of applications, including bots, web applications, and mobile apps. Developers have used the Reddit API to create applications for content moderation, data analysis, social media management, and more.


A note about Twitter

Photo by Chris J. Davis / Unsplash

Twitter has announced a series of changes to its developer platform, aimed at improving the developer experience and providing more flexibility and functionality for developers. While this might be helpful to some of us, others might not be thrilled about the corresponding pricing changes.

The changes to Twitter's developer platform pricing model sparked this YouTube tutorial idea. Reddit remains, after all, free for developers to access to their hearts' content.

In case you're curious about the Twitter developer platform changes, here are some of the hightlights:

New API tiers

Twitter is introducing new API tiers that provide developers with more options and flexibility for accessing Twitter data. The new tiers include Basic, Elevated, and Premium, and each tier offers different levels of access to Twitter data, as well as different pricing models.

Expansion of access to the full-archive search endpoint

Twitter is expanding access to its full-archive search endpoint, which allows developers to access all tweets posted on the platform since its inception. Previously, access to this endpoint was limited to certain use cases, but Twitter is now opening it up to all developers.

New developer portal

Twitter is launching a new developer portal that provides developers with a more streamlined and user-friendly experience for accessing Twitter APIs and tools. The portal includes improved documentation, better search functionality, and a range of other features designed to make it easier for developers to find the information they need.

New identity and access management system

Twitter is introducing a new identity and access management system that provides developers with more control over their API keys and access to Twitter data. The new system allows developers to manage access at the user level, rather than at the app level, which provides more granular control over access to Twitter data.

Overall, these changes are designed to provide developers with more flexibility and functionality when working with the Twitter API, and to make it easier for developers to build applications and services that leverage Twitter data.

But, if you're looking for cheap and chic (free, actually, and not that chic but whatever), watch the YouTube video to find out how to call the Reddit API.


In conclusion, the Reddit API is a powerful tool for developers looking to build applications that integrate with the Reddit platform. With the ability to retrieve user and subreddit data, submit and comment on posts, and moderate communities, the API offers a wide range of functionality that can be customized to meet specific needs. The Python praw library provides a convenient and easy-to-use wrapper for the Reddit API, allowing developers to quickly and easily access and manipulate Reddit data.

Whether you're building a new app or integrating Reddit functionality into an existing application, the Reddit API offers a wealth of opportunities for innovation and creativity. So why not give it a try and see what you can create with the Reddit API?