• Veedem@lemmy.world
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    3 months ago

    He sold about 500,000 shares. He owned, apparently, 3.3% of the 17.06 million total shares of the company, meaning he had a little over 562,000 shares. He sold almost all of his shares. That doesn’t exactly exude confidence in future growth, IMO.

    • tal@lemmy.today
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      3 months ago

      On the other hand, he already cashed out once and was wrong, so…

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Huffman

      The site’s audience grew rapidly in its first few months, and by August 2005, Huffman noticed their habitual user-base had grown so large that he no longer needed to fill the front page with content himself.[11][14][15] Huffman and Ohanian sold Reddit to Condé Nast on October 31, 2006, for a reported $10 million to $20 million.[3][16] Huffman remained with Reddit until 2009, when he left his role as acting CEO.[17]

      Huffman spent several months backpacking in Costa Rica[18] before co-creating the travel website Hipmunk with Adam Goldstein, an author and software developer, in 2010. Funded by Y Combinator,[19][20] Hipmunk launched in August 2010[21] with Huffman serving as CTO.[22] In 2011, Inc. named Huffman to its 30 under 30 list.[22]

      In 2014, Huffman said that his decision to sell Reddit had been a mistake, and that the site’s growth had exceeded his expectations.[23] On July 10, 2015, Reddit hired Huffman as CEO following the resignation of Ellen Pao[24] and during a particularly difficult time for the company.[25] Upon rejoining the company, Huffman’s top goals included launching Reddit’s iOS and Android apps, fixing Reddit’s mobile website, and creating A/B testing infrastructure.[3]

      Since returning to Reddit, Huffman instituted a number of technological changes including an updated mobile site and stronger infrastructure, as well as new content guidelines.

      I don’t think that he’s had a whole lot of faith in Reddit as a business since early-on.

      • Flying Squid@lemmy.world
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        3 months ago

        Huffman’s top goals included launching Reddit’s iOS and Android apps

        Mission accomplished! Those undeniably shitty apps definitely were launched.

        • tal@lemmy.today
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          3 months ago

          I’ve never used them, but IIRC they acquired some third-party client and then just modified them. “Blue Alien” or something like that?

          googles

          “Alien Blue”, at least for the official iOS app.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alien_Blue

          I dunno what the history of the Android app is.

          That being said, they’re responsible for what they acquire, just saying that a lot of that might not be developed in-house.

          • poppy@lemm.ee
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            3 months ago

            They acquired Alien Blue, but what they put out under “Reddit” was not Alien Blue in the least bit. They basically bought it to kill it. I had Alien Blue. :(

          • Flying Squid@lemmy.world
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            3 months ago

            Hey, acquiring another app and launching it as your own app is still launching it! What would they have done without spez?

              • quicklime@lemm.ee
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                3 months ago

                My favorite way to visualize the meaning of “asshat”: the person is such a sad waste of human life that their entire upper body is effectively just a hat for their posterior.

        • tal@lemmy.today
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          3 months ago

          Well, you wouldn’t expect it to in the growth phase.

          A lot of consumer-facing Internet companies have a large portion of their costs be fixed costs. That is, a programmer or QA guy costs the same amount whether you have ten users or ten million users. But your revenue is linear in your userbase size. So you really don’t want to be a small company, if you fit that profile.

          The idea is to burn money and grow rapidly to the point where your fixed costs are relatively small. It makes no sense to try to generate profit if you lose growth for it.

          That’s especially true for social media companies, because for them, network effect is a major factor – the value of the network is something like the square of the number of users.

          So you really want to be big, not small.

          So the solution is to grow quickly, lose money during that period, then adjust and monetize the userbase when you can’t afford to burn money growing any more.

          That transition to a profitable state after a money-losing growth state usually means that a company is gonna do something unpopular (since they’re optimizing for something other than appeal) and what Corey Doctorow was complaining about as “enshittification”.

          The fact that Reddit lost money during the growth phase doesn’t mean that it was a failure – that would have been intended, part of the business model.

          Now, if it’s losing money once the growth phase is done, that could be another story.

          • APassenger@lemmy.world
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            3 months ago

            It’s old enough to vote. Or serve in the US military.

            Or attend college as a non-genius.

            I’m familiar with growth stage. 18 to 19 years seems like a long one. Web 2.0 happened years ago.

      • Null User Object@programming.dev
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        3 months ago

        According to the second link, he sold nearly all of his class A shares, but none of his class B shares. His total share of the company went from 3.2% to 2.6%, which, is still not insignificant.

        • laverabe@lemmy.world
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          3 months ago

          yeah but your *OP’s statement ‘he sold almost all of his shares’ isn’t really accurate as he really only sold 19% of his shares

    • AbidanYre@lemmy.world
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      3 months ago

      I thought they paid him like $200M last year? How does that work out with only half a million shares?

      • Ranvier@sopuli.xyz
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        3 months ago

        It doesn’t, he had like 4.6 million shares before the ipo. The 500,000 number sold is just his class A shares. He’ll still have 4.1 million shares of class b stock after this it looks like. The class b stock has ten votes compared to one vote for class a stock for any shareholder votes I believe. So selling only his class a shares won’t change the percent voting control of the company he has by much. The person you’re replying to is confused about how many total shares he has. I don’t think the class b shares are being openly traded though, I think the ipo is just offering class a shares, which is what’s causing the confusion here. He sold almost all of his class a shares, but still has plenty of class b.

        https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1713445/000162828024011448/reddit-sx1a2.htm#i1b9a579e78a34dfa99f7f26daeec195b_100

        • ExcursionInversion@lemmy.world
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          3 months ago

          If the people in this thread could read this and understand it that would be amazing. This isn’t some gotcha moment…

          • Ranvier@sopuli.xyz
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            3 months ago

            Yeah, I mean ipo’s in general are definitely a rich get richer kind of thing that screw over retail traders, but I don’t think there’s anything particularly unusual about this one.

    • ripcord@lemmy.world
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      3 months ago

      That’s weird, I thought the majority of the $150m or so he got last year was in stock. And this says he barely cleared 1/10th of that with this sale.

      Edit: nevermind, explained in other comments

    • tal@lemmy.today
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      3 months ago

      So, at some point, Reddit was going to have to be generating a return. Spez or no spez.

      I don’t particularly like the route they took – killing the third-party clients was annoying and I think that there were ways to be a profitable super-forum site and still have third-party clients. But it was gonna be something, and whatever they did – more ads, selling data on users, only providing some functionality to paid users – was gonna be unpopular.

      • Sylvartas@lemmy.world
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        3 months ago

        I would have been ok with reasonable prices for API calls. Bandwidth has a cost after all. But they so obviously set out to drive the third party apps out of business so they could sell ads in the official app/website it just disgusted me.

        Also that new mobile site is so shitty, I refuse to believe it’s not on purpose.

        • RatBin@lemmy.world
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          3 months ago

          What they didn’t see in doing so was that the core content of the site was curated mostly by people who used either old reddit or third party apps. Modding would be unnecessarily annoying without them. The content is, in fact, way worse than it used be, more importantly bots are in the open and with no counter. You can track the amount if reposts. As for mods they can be as toxic as ever, posting on reddit is hard unless you follow small subs or generic ones that let you post whatever. The site itself is the opposite of user friendly: they wanted to be an alternative to all other social media ever…but instagram, tiktok, youtube, even that deranged thing known as x, let you post peacefully amd without too many restrictions. Reddit…forget about it.

        • lagomorphlecture@lemm.ee
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          3 months ago

          I don’t get why they had to drive out 3rd party apps for that? They try to make the ads look like user content so it seems like they could have fed it into the 3rd party apps. It must have something to do with the exact placement of the ads?

          • Sylvartas@lemmy.world
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            3 months ago

            Idk maybe for performance tracking purposes the ads are marked as such and it’s accessible from the API

        • ripcord@lemmy.world
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          3 months ago

          There were some internal docs leaked that made me think their real motivation was that they had signed some contracts for API access and pricing (probably a direct response to AI scraping), and that they were actually contractually obligated to close stuff down and/or set crazy prices. I think it may not have been about apps at all (or very little)

          • prole@sh.itjust.works
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            3 months ago

            What do you think API access is? They have 100% control over how much they charge for access. There is no entity above them that they’re signing contracts with to decide pricing. There is no situation where what you just said makes any sense.

          • tal@lemmy.today
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            3 months ago

            If you make stuff using money from investors who are giving you that money with the expectation that you will use it to generate a return, yeah, pretty much.

            Reddit wasn’t someone’s volunteer project.

      • Ghostalmedia@lemmy.world
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        3 months ago

        Honestly, the things that really pissed me off were

        1. Very little migration time. They pulled the rug out from everyone fairly quickly.
        2. The lying, and Christian’s evidence that proved they were lying.
        3. Not working with developers for a reasonable middle ground.
    • PatFusty@lemm.ee
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      3 months ago

      Hot take is I don’t think anyone should care about Aaron Swartz. He didn’t do anything for Reddit in the merger and left without doing anything for Reddit so who cares. He then died being a martyr for a cause barely anyone cares about and his death didn’t inspire any change to education publication/copyright. Nobody should care.

      Edit: you can downvote me all you want but I would like someone to comment on 1 thing Aaron contributed to Reddit. Why should anyone remember his name other than ‘but he killed himself for the cause bro’.

      • stoly@lemmy.world
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        3 months ago

        I think you have to convince everyone why it is reasonable that you are so angry and hateful towards someone you never knew.

        • PatFusty@lemm.ee
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          3 months ago

          I wasn’t angry or hateful though? If anything I’m irritated of all the praise for not inherently doing anything.

          • stoly@lemmy.world
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            3 months ago

            Literally I’ve seen two to three references of him after 17 years on reddit. You’re exaggerating how much people talk about him.

            • PatFusty@lemm.ee
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              3 months ago

              So by that logic Aaron is relatively obscure right? Must be surprising to see his name on a Lemmy thread with so many upvotes. 2 or 3 references lol sure. I’m sure you haven’t also seen one of the 2 or 3 documentaries on his life either.

              • BreakDecks
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                3 months ago

                For someone who is tired of hearing about Aaron Schwartz, you sure have a lot to say about him, and seem to think about him quite a lot. More than me for sure.

      • This is fine🔥🐶☕🔥@lemmy.world
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        3 months ago

        He was also a libertarian techbro who thought ‘child pornography isn’t necessarily abuse’

        In the US, it is illegal to possess or distribute child pornography, apparently because doing so will encourage people to sexually abuse children.

        This is absurd logic. Child pornography is not necessarily abuse. Even if it was, preventing the distribution or posession of the evidence won’t make the abuse go away. We don’t arrest everyone with videotapes of murders, or make it illegal for TV stations to show people being killed.

        https://web.archive.org/web/20090719140727/http://bits.are.notabug.com/

        • DragonTypeWyvern@literature.cafe
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          3 months ago

          In the sense that he actually was a “free speech absolutist” type, yeah. I think we can be pretty certain he didn’t do it himself though, otherwise the FBI would absolutely have charged him for it as they harassed him to death.

        • catloaf@lemm.ee
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          3 months ago

          You should probably use quote formatting to indicate that that’s a quote, because right now it looks like your words

      • _bac@lemmy.world
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        3 months ago

        Are you saying almost no one cares about open access to scientific publications?

    • remotelove@lemmy.ca
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      3 months ago

      From my experience, these people have lots more shares than what they sold. And aside from spez, it’s not really that much.

      If I am not mistaken, these sales are also planned and public knowledge before the sales are executed. The key shareholders should know executives are going to dump stock.

      But yes. This seems normal to me.

      One thing of note is the average price spez sold for. That is actually below market value so it’s likely that his sale price was fixed, which I believe is a thing.

      • webghost0101@sopuli.xyz
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        3 months ago

        At least they are destroying their own place, now lets hope they just become rich nobodys and keep their greedy fingers of everything else.

      • Ultragigagigantic@lemmy.world
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        3 months ago

        I don’t. Such as the nature of living in the conservative fascist multiverse.

        You cant expect everyone to stop wanting to crush the weak just because you were born in a era of unprecedented technological advancement. Feudalism is still alive and well in some parts of the world, and it has been going strong throughout human history. For all we know, it will outlast democracy.

        We are cavemen and cavewomen with space ships and computer phones. Stop having such high expectations for us dumbasses.

        • BreakDecks
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          3 months ago

          This is just you saying that you would crush the weak if you had the opportunity so you empathize with those that do.

          • Hamartia@lemmy.world
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            3 months ago

            When I was poor and complained about inequality they said I was bitter; now that I’m rich and I complain about inequality they say I’m a hypocrite. I’m beginning to think they just don’t want to talk about inequality.

    • festus@lemmy.ca
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      3 months ago

      Some of these people have been with Reddit since the very beginning and this is basically their first practical chance to sell any of their shares - I wouldn’t read too much into their activity this week. For a company valued at $9B, having the founder & other executives only sell $41M in the week of the IPO if anything feels like the opposite of dumping.