Friday, September 22, 2023

SEC public service campaign sparks outrage online

A new public service campaign custom made for investing during these meme-filled times is sparking outrage from some on social media who say it pokes fun at the very people its meant to educate.

The pushback is less about the spot, which features a satirical TV game show called Investomania, than it is about whos behind it: the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Videos posted on theSECs YouTube account,[1] which feature two contestants choosing where to put their money from among options including crypto to the moon, meme stocks and stocks on margin, mark a fresh attempt by Wall Streets main regulator to encourage people to research before investing. For many, the new approach seems to be landing with a thud.

In one of the SEC videos, the Investomania game show host turns to Brad, a red-headed contestant with wiry curls, informing him that its his turn to pick an investment. Brad immediately chooses meme stocks and slams on a button to invest. The decision is met with a loud buzzer, a bold red X across the screen, a pile of cash disappearing into a trap floor, and a pie spattered across Brads face.

The host responds with a facetious ouch as the fake live audience bursts into laughter. The 30-second SEC spot ends with a voiceover warning viewers that investing is not a game, encouraging them to take an investing quiz on website.

In real life, retail investors who poured into meme stocks and digital assets are having a tough year. The crypto market saw$200 billion wiped outin a day after last months collapse of TerraUSD. [9]Meanwhile, so-called meme stocks like GameStop Corp. and AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc., which surged in popularity in early 2021 at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic,have plunged.

The Investomania campaign was designed to generate conversation about the importance of independent, non-biased research in making investment decisions, the SEC said a statement.

Weve seen the real risks of investing on margin, following celebrity endorsements, and investing based on promises of guaranteed returns, and were happy to see that investors are talking about these things, the agency added.

However, thus far, a lot of the reaction to the spot on FinTwit, the finance community on Twitter, has been focused on panning the SECs campaign, rather than conversing about the value of investment research.

This is a video from the official SECs Youtube Page.

It seems to trivialize millions of retail investors, seemingly diminishes one of the most important market movements of 2021, and appears to poke fun at millions of average people joining the market. unusual_whales (@unusual_whales)June 1, 2022[11][12]


  1. ^ SECs YouTube account, (
  2. ^ @SECGov (
  3. ^ @GaryGensler (
  4. ^ (
  5. ^ June 1, 2022 (
  6. ^ @SECGov (
  7. ^ June 1, 2022 (
  8. ^ June 1, 2022 (
  9. ^ last months collapse of TerraUSD. (
  10. ^ June 2, 2022 (
  11. ^ (
  12. ^ June 1, 2022 (


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