NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–WallStreetBets, the iconic grassroots movement that gained international prominence by bringing powerful hedge funds to their knees, announced today plans for using blockchain technology in a product aimed at combating market manipulation in traditional finance. The step towards blockchain-based finance represents a change of course for the unofficial, hierarchy-free movement of largely pseudonymous participants, whose shared mission is to fight back against corrupt institutions and to end dependence on them altogether.
Prominent figures within the WallStreetBets community — which recently rocketed to fame by short squeezing GameStop through coordination on platforms like Telegram and Reddit — have been working with experts in blockchain and fintech technology to create what is known as exchange-traded portfolios, or ETPs. Although similar to index funds, offering investors exposure to a variety of assets, ETPs can be run in a completely decentralized manner. Moreover, by harnessing the transparency and community consensus mechanisms provided by blockchain and smart contract technology, WallStreetBets ETPs may serve as an alternative to the kind of market manipulation perpetuated by opaque and politically connected banks and hedge funds.
This novel product is made possible through what is known as a decentralized autonomous organization, or DAO, meaning that control over the associated ETPs rebalancing is placed in the hands of community members with voting rights instead of privileged insiders and unaccountable institutions. Any retail investor with access to the internet will soon be able to use an associated application on their computer or smartphone to not only get exposure to the ETPs but also participate in polling for how their indices are weighted.
“The amalgamation of blockchain technology with financial markets is the next logical step for finance — and not just for Wall Street but everywhere,” said Jaime Rogozinski, the founder of WallStreetBets and strategic partner of the WSB DApp project. “It will result in stronger, more democratized markets and will empower individuals around the world.”
Born in the ashes of the global financial crisis, starting with the Occupy Movement, WallStreetBets has gained a massive organic following on social platforms. There is no formal leadership, and members of the movement are not of one particular political ideology — apart from working to level the playing field so as to empower the proverbial “little guy.”
The WallStreetBets Decentralized Application, or DApp, will be governed by its own $WSB governance token that holders can use to vote on rebalancing and exposure of each community-owned instrument. So, for example, if token holders believe Tesla stock should comprise 90 percent instead of ten percent of a particular ETP portfolio, then they can vote on it by signing a simple transaction using their $WSB tokens during voting cycles.
“For WallStreetbets, the forthcoming release of our $WSB token is a shift in strategy,” said BTCVIX, CEO of the WallStreetBets DApp. “We tried to fight back through protest after the global financial crash back in 2008-2009. We then tried to beat Wall Street insiders at their own game by short squeezing them to near bankruptcy. And now, with our soon-to-be-launched ETPs, we aim to simply exit the existing system for one that is fair and relies on community.”
Founded in 2012, WallStreetBets is a movement that aims to empower the “little guy” investors of the world against unaccountable financial institutions. The movement lacks formal leadership and is instead a grassroots decentralized effort to leverage the power of community organizing for bringing accountability and transparency.