A moderator of the rapidly growing Gabby Petito subreddit says the forum’s growth is ‘unseen’

  • The Gabby Petito subreddit has grown to over 100,000 members since it was started last week.
  • The forum has grown alongside the massive public interest in the case. 
  • “It is sudden, but this growth is unseen, at least for me,” one moderator told Insider.

On Reddit, a forum titled r/GabbyPetito has amassed 100,000 members since it was created on September 13. Redditors have been using the page to discuss the case and collect clues about Petito and her once-fiancé, Brian Laundrie, who returned home to Florida without her after their trip and declined to speak with authorities on Petito’s disappearance. 

Laundrie was named as a person of interest in the case and has been missing since last week. The FBI said on Sunday that “human remains were discovered consistent with the description” of Petito in Grand Teton National Park. 

Moderators locked the subreddit on Sunday night to avoid overwhelming the page after the FBI’s announcement.

It’s not the fastest-growing subreddit of all time, with r/WallStreetBets earning over six million subscribers in one week in January, but it does appear to be the fastest-growing subreddit dedicated to searching for a missing person, a popular genre on the platform. 

“It is sudden, but this growth is unseen, at least for me,” Sunzu, one moderator of the subreddit (who spoke on the condition of anonymity due to the privacy of identity on Reddit), told Insider.

The page gained more new subscribers than any other subreddit across the site on Monday and became the second-fastest-growing subreddit of the last seven days, according to the data collection site frontpagemetrics.com.

“This is absolutely the fastest case of growth I have ever seen on Reddit for any type of missing persons case,” said another moderator who goes by u/Petiterunner and also spoke on the condition of anonymity.