Design Changes Coming To Vlad’s Empire

The party is officially over at Robinhood.

Yesterday trading app Robinhood announced it will eliminate the “digital confetti” from its trading app in an effort to placate regulators and a growing list of critics.

Party Planning

Robinhood first introduced the digital-confetti animation on its app in the early fall of 2016 as a way to denote milestones such as a users’ first trade. Trivial as it may sound, the confetti has become a focal point for critics who say Robinhood “gamifies” investing and promotes risky behavior. And the number of naysayers is piling up:

  • In December, Massachusetts regulators alleged that the use of confetti was one of several strategies employed by Robinhood to encourage repeat engagements and risky behavior within the app.

Madhu Muthukumar, the senior director of product at Robinhood said, “The confetti is getting really misconstrued, and I think it’s actually doing the opposite of what we want… it seems to have distracted from the goal..to make regular people…feel like they can participate.”

In the wake of the Gamestop drama — where users were locked out of trading certain “meme stocks” — Robinhood has been on a campaign to rehab its public image ahead of an IPO. Starting next week the company will roll out new designs to acknowledge “investing milestones” while also educating customers about the actions they are taking.

the takeaway

With an IPO valuation potential above $40 billion, there may be reason for confetti yet.

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