Reddit 'was well within the bounds' of its policies -CEO

"...it's important to understand that WallStreetBets is one of many finance- and investing-related communities on Reddit. This particular community specializes in high-risk, high-reward investments than what you might find in other, more conservative financial communities," Huffman said.

Wall Street hedge fund managers, the chief executives of Robinhood and Reddit, and a YouTube streamer known as Roaring Kitty were grilled on Thursday by U.S. lawmakers about the rally in shares of GameStop Corp.

Some of Wall Street's most powerful players, including billionaire Republican mega-donor and Citadel CEO Ken Griffin, made rare public defenses of their business practices as lawmakers probed how Reddit users trading on retail platforms squeezed hedge funds that had bet against shares of the video game retailer and other companies.

Video Transcript

STEVE HUFFMAN: The specific community we'd like to talk about today is Wall Street Bets. It's important to understand that Wall Street Bets is one of many finance and investing-related communities on Reddit. This particular community specializes in higher risk, higher reward investments than what you might find in other more conservative financial communities on Reddit with such names as Personal Finance, Investing, and Financial Independence.

A few weeks ago, we saw the power of community in general and of this community in particular when the traders of Wall Street Bets banded together at first this is an investment opportunity not usually accessible to retail investors, but later more broadly to defend all retail investors against the criticism of the financial establishment. With the increase in attention, Wall Street Bets unsurprisingly faced a surge in traffic and new users. At Reddit, our first duty in these situations is to our communities and our role in this moment was to keep Wall Street Bets online.

Working around the clock, we scaled our infrastructure, made technology changes to help this community withstand the onslaught of traffic, and we acted as diplomats to help resolve conflict within Wall Street Bets leadership. We have since analyzed activity in Wall Street-- in Wall Street Bets to determine whether bots, foreign agents, or other bad actors played a significant role. They have not.

In every metric we checked, the activity in Wall Street Bets was well within normal parameters and its moderation tools are working as expected. We will, of course, cooperate with valid legal requests from federal and state regulators. That said, we do believe that this community was well within the bounds of our own policies.