// From Mark

GameStop, Robinhood, and Reputation

I'm guessing I'm not the only one this week who has watched in amazement as the whole GME thing unfolded, with smaller stock traders taking on some of the largest hedge funds on Wall Street.

As things heated up on Thursday, I was somewhat appalled to see Robinhood, who was supposed to be all about introducing the "little guy" to the world of stocks and investments, completely cut off the ability of their customers to purchase shares of companies touted by the WSB subreddit group. RH has denied this was done at the behest of the large hedge funds taking a major hit in the whole fiasco, but this is troubling nonetheless.

If Robinhood couldn't stand up for the little guy when the pressure was on like this, it's hard to see how their reputation can come back. All of this for me is reinforcing the idea that it can take years to gain a good reputation, but just minutes to lose it. (And based on the number of one-star reviews now appearing on the Robinhood app, "losing it" seems like an apt description.)

Time will tell if Robinhood can regain trust among its users, but either way I think this is a huge lesson for all of us developing apps which provide a service for our customers.

Remembering who those customers are and why they use our apps can go a long way in helping maintain a solid reputation in today's competitive app landscape.

Mark Winters


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