The Malice Towards Robin $HOOD
Every traditional media outlet and its compatriots, the ones who get paid to voice the traditional media opinion are bashing Robinhood. It is not just about the gamified features in Robinhood or the halt in trading sessions that is attracting this.
It is about the shifting power dynamics. It is a reflection of the unconscious bias towards different generations, different non-media classes by a particular segment of the status quo against another segment of the status quo. And most importantly it’s a profitable public stance to take.
The success of Robinhood has some obvious wins for the regular guy which this status quo chooses to ignore because they are the self-chosen moral arbiters of what is right and what is wrong.
Talking Your Book
This term of talking your book usually refers to investors talking good things about their investments on CNBC or any other public platforms while only hinting subtly that they have a tiny stake in the company they are praising (Objectively of course).
But a dangerous version of this talking your book happens all the time where the stake is not in the form of stock in a company. It is in the form of status and network protection. And there is not even a subtle hint of their stake because SEC doesn’t have rules about disclosing who you are hanging out in your social life.
It is all about the Tribe!
So what is the whole point of bashing Robinhood? It is about belonging to your Tribe and protecting your status in the tribe. There is an east coast investor/media tribe, there is a west coast investor/media class tribe broadly speaking. It is almost certain on any new company the takes of these two sides depend on where the company originated and which side has a stake in it.
The other side takes a negative view given a small crack in the story. In the case of Robinhood, the crack was the halt in trading. Even though every other Robinhood competitor had to stop trading. But again why talk about something in Nuance when you have an ax to pick with the other side.
What is the Point?
The point is narratives in media have unconscious & conscious biases. Look closely towards the hard and soft incentives of the talking heads before piling on a company.