In the wake of the recent controversy surrounding Reddit, the sites users are looking for more transparency about the way the site is being handled now, and in the future. Some suggested that there was more to the story of former-CEO Ellen Pao’s sudden removal last week than initially suggested, and one of the more plausible theories so far came from none other than a former Reddit CEO in a Reddit posting.
Yishan Wong was Reddit’s CEO for roughly two years, departing from his post in the fall of 2014 when he said that the position was “too draining” on him under the newest creative direction the company was taking. Mere hours after the news broke that Ellen Pao would no longer serve as Reddit’s CEO, Yishan posted this response in a thread titled “What’s The Best ‘Long-Con’ You’ve Ever Pulled?”
In 2006, reddit was sold to Conde Nast. It was soon obvious to many that the sale had been premature, the site was unmanaged and under-resourced under the old-media giant who simply didn’t understand it and could never realize its full potential, so the founders and their allies in Y-Combinator (where reddit had been born) hatched an audacious plan to re-extract reddit from the clutches of the 100-year-old media conglomerate.
Together with Sam Altman, they recruited a young up-and-coming technology manager with social media credentials. Alexis, who was on the interview panel for the new reddit CEO, would reject all other candidates except this one. The manager was to insist as a condition of taking the job that Conde Nast would have to give up significant ownership of the company, first to employees by justifying the need for equity to be able to hire top talent, bringing in Silicon Valley insiders to help run the company. After continuing to grow the company, he would then further dilute Conde Nast’s ownership by raising money from a syndicate of Silicon Valley investors led by Sam Altman, now the President of Y-Combinator itself, who in the process would take a seat on the board.
Once this was done, he and his team would manufacture a series of otherwise-improbable leadership crises, forcing the new board to scramble to find a new CEO, allowing Altman to use his position on the board to advocate for the re-introduction of the old founders, installing them on the board and as CEO, thus returning the company to their control and relegating Conde Nast to a position as minority shareholder.
JUST KIDDING. There’s no way that could happen.
He may be kidding, but this is actually the most plausible explanation for the kind of turmoil that’s been rampant on Reddit since Pao took over, and would certainly explain away some of the more boneheaded moves that are driving most Redditors over to VOAT.