WSB Revolt – The WallStreetBets-Reddit Feud
Markets were at their craziest times when WallStreetBets peaked in popularity. Leaving their print on the stock market for decades to come, this online Reddit forum of mostly millennial users with little to no knowledge regarding the stock market embraced being the underdog as a retail investor. Sending shares of bankrupt companies like GameStop more than 1,000 percent high in a matter of days even caused Congress to hold a hearing regarding the issue, and it has continued to haunt big brokerages and short-selling institutions. Although the forum’s hype has died down significantly, a conflict is now brewing between the forum and Reddit themselves.
More specifically, it was announced on Wednesday that WallStreetBets founder Jaime Rogozinski filed a lawsuit against Reddit due to multiple grievances, the first being the company’s decision to oust him as a moderator on the forum in 2020. Jaime created the forum in 2012, and it did not see significant growth until 2019 when many brokerages opened the gates for retail investors by removing commissions from trading. During that time, he was making decisions such as posting links to his published book regarding millennials and the stock market and promoting trading competitions, which ultimately led to Reddit performing this action due to “attempts to monetize a community”. This is simply the start however, as there has also been conflict regarding the trademark rights to WallStreetBets. Jaime applied to trademark the brand in 2020, but Reddit filed to oppose it a few months after this moderator conflict saying that it is a vital part of their brand. Reddit argues that Wall Street Bets has been perfectly fine, if not better since Jaime left because most of the action occurred in 2021, but it’ll make for an interesting court battle regardless.
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I am not a financial advisor and my comments should never be taken as financial advice. Investments come with risk, so always do your research and analysis beforehand.