All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions.
George Bernard Shaw
I was talking with a well-known, paid, financial media contributor today and he posited a most interesting question, “Why do you SMB guys share so much on StockTwits for free?” There are many reasons but I want to focus on the one most important. We do so because the StockTwits network, the idea of a network like it, is essential to heal this investment/trading virus of no-confidence in Wall Street.
During the near recent collapse of our banking system confidence in traditional media and the Street eroded. Many had lost too much in their retirement accounts, personal trading, etc. The worst of this was that during the free fall many felt traditional media failed to properly provide them with the information necessary to make sound investment/trading decisions.
A call for a new paradigm was trumpeted. Where would we begin and what would this new financial media look like? Here are some thoughts…..
Let’s start with a network that can be trusted. Add a network that properly vets contributors. Sweeten with stars inside this network validated by the audience. Stars inside this network that stick to their genius. Contributors inside this network that accept their limited genius. Stars who are transparent about their work. Wait isn’t that what @alphatrends or @johnwelshphd offer on that social media network with the $$ after every tweet?
Now this new model can’t just be self-proclaimed gurus at self-created blogs or websites because how do we know if they are legitimate. Remember the Yahoo message boards! So this trustworthy network must do the due diligence. Wait a second now…. SMB met with Phil Pearlman (HT @jbeyda), co-founder of a start-up financial media social network, five times over the course of 6 months talking SMB. Only after he read everything we were blogging and tweeting were we ever invited to join his network.
Next the focus of this game-changing network must be about sharing information and not just “talking your book”. Just give the people the information and let them make their trading decisions already. Wait this sounds an awful lot like that @thereformedbroker keeps tweeting who is a part of that new network with that funny name ????? Afterall if I make a bad investment/trading decision I can live with that. But what is not fair or right or digestible is lacking this proper information. This network would truly add value.
Instead of just complaining about old media Phil, Howard and their talented team at StockTwits created a new network for investors and traders that is open, transparent, littered with genius in various financial areas, shares trading/investing ideas in real-time, and has increased the trust in market participants. This contribution cannot be understated. StockTwits is setting the standard for the new financial media paradigm. And after 2008 this is a financial media network we need.
Tony Hseih of Zappos in Delivering Happiness defined happiness as such:
Happiness is really just about four things: perceived control, perceived progress, connectedness (number and depth of your relationship), and vision/meaning (being part of something bigger than yourself).
I never served in the military. I didn’t run into one of those burning building during 9/11. I am not a public servant. I did share everything the market has taught me over the past twelve years in the Best Seller One Good Trade: Inside the Highly Competitive World of Proprietary Trading (Wiley Trading), but I was paid for that by a very rich publishing firm. However every time I tweet, blog and then tweet $$ I am part of something bigger than myself. I am in my own very small way making the financial information flow to the public just a little bit better.
So Mr. Well-Paid Financial Media Star (you know who you are and actually you’re kinda a good guy) to answer your question that is why we do what we do on StockTwits.