What Replit could have become


this is all from my experience being a silly little goofster in the Replit community for around 2 years now. I’ve been a Replit Rep and trending countless times, but all of this is opinion.

To Replit staff members reading this, please note that this is not meant to undermine your work in any way, but the management of the company and poor decisions leading to an upset and sinking community.

With that out of the way,

From the moment the new pricing was unveiled earlier this year, I knew the Replit ship would sink. Not only pricing, however the direction of the company as a whole.

I wake up today to see a new newsletter. Whereas before it would be cool community apps, some new feature and maybe a game jam, 4/5 of the latest newsletter’s headlines had “AI” in it.

And I’m just sad because what Replit could have been if it didn’t pivot audiences could have been amazing.

What changed?

AI. Pricing. Professionals.

Back in the good ol’ days of Replit, you could spin up an obscure microservice that would do cool things, share it with the community and laugh with the folks on the Discord. If it was something like, for example, the checkmarks extension I made, you didn’t need to worry about hosting. Everything would either be Always-On or pinged for the good enough reliability of a small app that the community would use, build off of and enjoy.

Now, when you’re making something you’re asked to use Ghostwriter. Look! There’s extensions! Catch: it can’t add new file extension theming or change the editor. Apart from the distractions and mishaps of the IDE, everything would go smoothly.

When it’s time to upload to the community, you could either:

  • Upload as-is with a clickbaity thumbnail so it would get past the first wave of impressions
  • “Deploy” your project for 2x the normal cost of a cloud provider, when your silly little app doesn’t need it.

And when it’s on the community, there’s comments from spammers and scammers & no hope of popularity, swallowed by the endless sea of trending AI gimmicks with 3 likes.

I’ll go more in-depth with why I feel this way now, and what Replit could have been if it went in a better direction.

It’s all AI.

I don’t care about AI. People, generally, don’t care about AI.

It was a trend like crypto, but more frightening & world-changing. There’s no doubt that AI has many applications, however the oversaturation has made the public disinterested. In my opinion, the reality is that you won’t be able to talk to a computer to make an app, not for a long long while. The technology behind it right now isn’t capable of replacing jobs or even helping in obscure circumstances, even with a 100t model like GPT-4.

But Replit changed around AI, and now it’s falling with them. I remember the front page Repls getting hundreds of likes and the Twitter booming with accomplishments and anticipation… Now it’s just AI, Bard, and partnerships with Google. and nobody cares much.

It’s all professionals.

Replit will NEVER BE visual studio code.
Replit will NEVER BE an established hosting provider.
Replit will NEVER BE go-to for professionals.

Yet we see Deployments at $211/month with the same bandwidth as a $4 DigitalOcean droplet.

We see focus on the power users and those willing to pay up for convenience.

There is a very good reason you never see Fireship make a “Replit in 100 seconds” video. It’s not built for professionals, and is too late to the party of cloud providers.

Deployments and Bounties and new pricing bundles are aimed towards a tiny group of companies & people who care about convenience more than anything. The large established community aren’t that.

The “Scratch” of the future.

What the community was, and still is, are young aspiring developers. When I share a Repl with the community, I don’t expect people with full time jobs to analyse and comment.

What I expect is a welcoming community of likeminded aspiring people to tinker with it, fork & remix it, make their own adaptations, spins & engage with it fully. This is like what scratch.mit.edu is, a community of many people and cultures, more younger, coming together and doing what they love.

This is what Replit was to me. It was the prototype feel of Scratch with a whole new layer of programming languages and opportunities to learn on and springboard off of.

Instead of focusing on this opportunity, Replit is targeting the wrong people. They don’t want to be like Scratch, they want to be one of the big players with AI and overpriced Deployments under their belt for senior Dev junkies to swoon over.

It hasn’t been working. Instead of growing a thriving community, the Trending tab is full of profit-driven gimmicks that garner little engagement compared to the Repls of budding community members. This is a wrong turn.

What Replit could have been.

I saw Replit, before the shift into AI, professionals and profit, as the next big player in tech schooling.

It had the community of likeminded kids, teens and adults sharing little Repls.
It had an IDE that was in the sweet spot of not too terrible, not too professional, in the sweet spot.
It had courses like 100 days of code by our favourite British presenter.
It had partnerships with schools to bring this to the masses and people like the Replit Reps to inspire and drive.

Everything was set up: an established Learn centre, a budding community, forking and remixing, “good enough” computing that is great for prototypes and not full-fledged react bogus. Heck, it even had the amazing game engine Kaboom to make game building easy!

It could have become the next Scratch, the next Code.org where people by the millions who were interested in programming would jump on, create and share freely without a care in the world. It would be the centre of computer prototyping and mockup demos, all incased in an aspiring city of ever growing people saying “hey, I want a website”.

Not just the teens & kids but everyone could benefit, as one-click small machines preloaded with any programming language and library is a vital component of prototyping Replit NAILED. The quickest way to learn programming, try new ideas & springboard into more professional apps to bring everything to reality with having Replit to thank for it.


The Utopian Replit is gone.

The prominent community members have largely moved on after striking against terrible pricing and extremely poor community management.

Replit Reps was left in the dust after only one quarter.

Kaboom, the best glimmer of hope for the Utopian Replit is being kept alive by a few non-Replit contributors, lajbel & a shine of Mark.

The only non-AI updates I remember are from Ironclad, gifting us all an extensions update bright an early on a Monday.

And poor David Morgan is being forced to talk about Langchain.

and quite frankly, I think Replit will die. and im sad.


I definitely agree with the I think Replit will die. and im sad.
but I already accepted the fate of replit dying. I won’t be using replit anymore, account is going into deletion once the storage grace period is over. Instead, I will use a lot of alts, it is the only way I can steer away from paying to use replit. I am always a f2p user on replit.

I never ever pay for anything, not a single penny. And I am sure lots of alts will be created.


It is true that the trending is full of AI projects.
The bounties tab is full of AI project requests.
AI AI AI AI AI everywhere, and now there is almost no more space for those fun micro-projects in the past, like boogle, some very fun games made in the past, and other stuff that honestly only had one purpose: to do something, useful or not.


not saying that this is bad, I’m just saying that the balance is off

Same, because I’m literally broke :sob:


Please discuss and share feedback but please remember the community guidelines


Sorry you feel that way but I disagree with pretty much everything you said. And it’s disheartening how negative and mean your comments are. The vision for the company has been pretty much the same from the start, including the bet on AI. Here is a slide deck from our seed round around 2015 laying out our plans. And I’ve held the same vision since the first version in 2011.

We are going to build an amazing deployment platform — it already is — we have lots of happy customers and growing. That goal is not at odds with the community and the things you appreciate which we will continue to invest in.

Btw at every step of the way every change we made we had folks like you that were pretty upset with it. We had insane push back when we built the community features. Something like 5% of users deleted their accounts when we introduced profiles. But can you imagine Replit without profiles today?

I appreciate all your contributions so far but this is probably not the place for you anymore. If in the future you want to come back and feel our goals align with you then you’re more than welcome and we would love to have you.


All you quoted were opinions - and true, some people heavily advocate for AI.

Replit can be both for professionals & keep with the community it’s had for so long now, and that’s what many want. However, with all the news recently it seems like it’s going in a different direction.


Going to preface this saying that the post was in no way targeted directly at you or anyone at the team, but I feel is at the interests of the people I’ve been around for so long. I apologise if it was a bit mean.

For one, I don’t know how it can be an amazing deployment platform with the current partnerships and pricing models set in place. I’ve compared with other popular offerings and are staying well away. I can agree that the technology behind deployments is incredible, but being repackaged GCP has raised lots of doubts with other threads here discussing various changes with it.

The main point of this rant was to point at the direction that Replit seems to be going from the perspective of me and other folks chatting around daily within the Discord. I was quite saddened when I saw a new newsletter with it being just AI.

I agree that AI is a crucial part of the product now but along with the tooling for professionals, the marketing and updates seem to be all going towards those areas & the changes made have been largely either confusing or oversaturated to the average community member. A balance between the core parts of the product without sparking forums here isn’t something that has been achieved.

Please remember that I have always loved the work that the Replit team have been doing, along with the community as a whole. Fractures like 10xing pricing without technical explanations, the Rep program that faded into obscurity and having the focus shifted to professionals suddenly is what I slowly left Replit for.

I still love the platform & use it for many prototypes but I just can’t see me or the others I’ve connected with on Replit being there for much longer.

Again, my apologies for ranting once again about the state of a billion dollar company, but being around for so long and seeing it change like this I feel needs to be brought up one way or another. You’ve literally been my idol for the past 2 years.


Understood. And I’ve likely reacted too emotionally. You know I appreciate your feedback. Let’s set up a call and talk so I understand you better. Can you email me? Amjad@repl.it


Hey amasad! I also have some thoughts too and would like to join the call if it’s possible! Kinda like last time where it was on Discord would be appreciated! Hmu on Discord if you need: my username is “enzon3”


Just sent you an email, I also want to join.


I honestly couldn’t have put it better myself.
I first joined Replit so that I could use it as a place to host stuff for free. Let’s be honest, Replit is still the best at that for most non-web scenarios. (And web could be changing soon via static and on-demand deployments).
But later, I started interacting in the community via Repl Talk & Canny. I loved doing that but then both Repl Talk and the Canny boards were, sadly, shut down.
So after that, I moved to the then official Discord server where I helped people with code and chatted with people in the community. That was the magic of Replit. The community. I made some of my best friends through Replit and found so many people with similar interests to me. To me, Replit will always be the place where I found myself, became a proper developer and a proper community member.
I was a Replit Rep during the first cohort and it was honestly one of the best experiences I’ve had online.
I met new friends through the program, did fun collabs and events and helped people.
Two of the people I talk to the most I met through being a rep funnily enough. (@TechPandaPro and @LuisAFK)
So yeah, as somebody who’s been around Replit for years, I think the community aspect has got worse (I really don’t like Ask for some reason) but the platform itself has definitely improved A LOT and is continuing to do so.


I can’t edit the post because the thread is in slow mo… but think of this as a continuation

Oh, I’d also like to add that the community team seems to really dislike me for some reason yet I have no idea why. It was erm… a strange experience because as far as I know, I didn’t do anything to warrant that. I’m not going to publicly share all of that though.


First of all, I really appreciate you doing this, and being our voice, as a lot of us have tried, and no one seems to listen. I am not going to address everything, just things I feel the need to respond to. :slight_smile: I don’t want to get too in depth because I already got banned here once for speaking my mind and I don’t want that happening again.

I, personally disagree with this however, I would assume most people don’t want it shoved down their throats. As you point out, that’s all the trending page is.

THIS! Same with ask, instead of a community it is strictly a place for coding help. Now it doesn’t even feel like a community on either site. I used to get so many notifications every day from people on both sites, now I maybe get one a day on each.

Yes and being completely ignored/kicked out and forced to make our own forum.

I appreciate you making an account here, however, nothing he said was mean. Our opinions may be negative, but that doesn’t mean the Replit Staff shouldn’t listen to them. I don’t think I have ever actually heard a staff member ask what could be improved about ask/replit (with a few exceptions)…

Wouldn’t this mean that he is right?

I appreciate you saying this :slight_smile:

If you would allow, I would love to be a part of these talks as well (via email that is [sending an email right now]).


Excellent posts everyone. I think that a large part of the problem is relations between the Replit staff and the Replit community.

On Ask, the Replit staff decided to kill all social aspects (PMs and the VIP Lounge Chat) without warning. I can see why they wanted to put us in line, but I STRONGLY DISAGREE with not even asking us once to change our behavior before going to such drastic measures. Ask used to have a thriving community, but most of the once active members left, feeling driven away and unappreciated by the Replit staff. I get the strong impression that Ask is now meant to be strictly a help forum where there is nothing but precise answers and absolutely no community.

I personally feel ignored by the Replit staff almost every time. I feel like it is a fight just to get them to respond to anything, especially topics like the one about the new UI. If they are working on stuff, at least they should tell us so we don’t feel ignored. The Replit staff has always treated me very nicely in every interaction, but I feel like getting those interactions is far too difficult. I often feel like the Replit staff simply doesn’t care about us community members.

I have tried to word this in a way to demonstrate that most of this is either my feelings or the feelings of some other community members I know. I am stating how I feel, knowing that I could have misinterpreted. I don’t want a fight with Replit; I just want to reach an understanding. I like open communication, and I feel like Replit is incapable of that.

In summary, I am not trying to get on Replit’s bad side, but I feel like Replit does not care about me or the other community members. Thanks @amasad1 for joining Ask to participate in this discussion.


It’s pretty clear that after the massive wave of AI evolution, every company has jumped on the AI bandwagon, and Replit is no exception. I can’t agree with the idea that “nobody cares about AI” because it’s actually a big deal these days!

I think you should step out of your comfort zone and explore more about AI. You could even try your hand at creating some cool AI projects. Maybe that’s why you’re feeling a bit left out or disconnected.



I think Replit shouldn’t be pushing their paid AI stuff as hard as they are, because yes, AI is nice, but not everyone needs or wants to use it. I don’t know if it’s the same now, but it used to be that each Repl you made had Ghostwriter open by default (Even if you didn’t pay for it).

Additionally, someone shouldn’t be forced into using AI either, nor should anyone be forced out of their comfort zone regardless.


Has anyone had an email back from @amasad1 yet?


No, I haven’t gotten one yet :confused:


I got one, told u in DMs already