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Is Reddit the new Twitter? 'Redditor' reports live from apt. complex turned crime scene

Instead of tweeting her harrowing experience waiting for the police to clear a murderer from a nearby apartment, New Jersey resident takes to Reddit.

A standoff between New Jersey police and a man who reportedly shot another man with a rifle is being reported live on the Web. But not on Twitter, from which previous real-time incidents such as the river landing of US Airways 1549 were broadcast. This event is unfolding on the community site Reddit, where a "redditor" with the username Ellinika kicked off her reporting with:

Redditor Ellinika reports live from her apartment. Screenshot by Rafe Needleman/CNET

Ellinika, or Stephanie in real life, has also been e-mailing with the local paper, the Trentonian, and has been sending the paper photos from inside her apartment.

This is hardly the first time a live event has been broadcast on Reddit, but it is an illustration that Twitter is not the only place where people in communities gather to disseminate news and support each other.

While Reddit has a fraction of Twitter's traffic and a much smaller community, it does have a better design for community discussion. Topics are all anchored by an originating post, and discussions are threaded and stay with the post's URL. It is much more difficult to participate in Twitter discussions and keep track of who's saying what to whom.

The Trentonian runs Ellinika's photos. Screenshot by Rafe Needleman/CNET