WallStreetBets goes dark

After a wild day for public markets driven by Reddit traders commandeering stocks and combatting hedge fund short sellers, the community at r/wallstreetbets no longer has a home on Discord and its Reddit community has been locked down as an invite-only subreddit for the time being.

Update: 4:49pm PT: The r/wallstreetbets subreddit returned with a post from moderator u/zjz claiming that the group was “suffering from success,” and needed more help from Reddit to deal with the new flow of attention it has received while also calling out Discord for banning their chat community, “Discord did us dirty and I am not impressed with them destroying our community,” the moderator noted.

Discord announced this afternoon that they had banned the WallStreetBets Discord server following hate speech violations after “repeated warnings.” The Discord server had been seeing heavy traffic of new users in the past several days as traffic surged to the subreddit as well.

On Reddit’s end, it’s not quite so clear what has happened. It does not appear as though Reddit took direct action against the community, but instead that r/wallstreetbets moderators were overwhelmed by the influx of new users and have taken the subreddit down themselves. The site notes that only moderators and “approved users” are currently allowed in the community. A number of long-time subscribers have noted on social media that they are unable to access the community which boasted several million subscribers.

We’ve reached out to Reddit for further clarification.

In a statement given to TechCrunch earlier today before the WallStreetBets subreddit went private, a company spokesperson says, “Reddit’s site-wide policies prohibit posting illegal content or soliciting or facilitating illegal transactions. We will review and cooperate with valid law enforcement investigations or actions as needed.”

The full statement from a Discord spokesperson to TechCrunch:

The WallStreetBets server has been on our Trust & Safety team’s radar for some time due to occasional content that violates our Community Guidelines, including hate speech, glorifying violence, and spreading misinformation. Over the past few months, we have issued multiple warnings to the server admin.

Today, we decided to remove the server and its owner from Discord for continuing to allow hateful and discriminatory content after repeated warnings.

To be clear, we did not ban this server due to financial fraud related to GameStop or other stocks. Discord welcomes a broad variety of personal finance discussions, from investment clubs and day traders to college students and professional financial advisors. We are monitoring this situation and in the event there are allegations of illegal activities, we will cooperate with authorities as appropriate.