Bloomberg Law
Feb. 8, 2021, 4:15 AM

Reddit’s Populist Stock Movement Was 15 Years in the Making (1)

Priya Anand
Priya Anand
Bloomberg News

The Redditor revolt that made stock markets go haywire in recent weeks owes its origins, in part, to a humpback whale named Mister Splashy Pants. In 2007, Greenpeace asked the public to decide the name of a whale in the South Pacific Ocean for a campaign raising awareness of hunting by Japanese fisheries. A group of pranksters organized on the still-nascent message board Reddit to hijack Greenpeace’s online poll and push their chosen name. The organization and the netizens grappled for weeks until Greenpeace finally relented, and Mister Splashy Pants was crowned.

Two years later, Reddit Inc. co-founder Alexis Ohanian ...