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Reddit is being funded by a fake company? (reddit.com)
125 points by mik3y 6 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 98 comments





The company probably isn't fake, but this does bring up an interesting question: what's the point of forcing companies like reddit to publicly reveal their investors if their investor can be just a company name in a filing cabinet with no record of who owns it?

Nice story, but BS.

"Reddit’s latest Series F of $410 million dollars was funded by two lead investors. Fidelity Management and Research and Khaira Capital."

The only source I could find that company is involved is crunchbase, which anyone can edit.


I agree with you. I should have looked a little more closely before the lazy crosspost, especially considering the 'source'..

I occasionally look at a few very niche subreddits, but for news, Reddit is complete garbage. Reddit has been kind of dead to me since 2016. They were the first big victim of the ongoing anti-free-speech wave that started in 2016.

You also mean they were victims of social media propaganda and gaming the system

/R/the_donald was consistently getting bullshit content to the front page using bots.

If you're pro free speech you'll need to answer towards the onslaught of bot based content generation and fake users


The amount of bots on most social media is just staggering.

I had a weird one on Reddit the other day, and in thinking back, I rather wish I had saved it than just reporting it.

There were a comment under one post from 2 different users that was exactly the same. It was a somewhat well though out comment on the shorter side so it caught my eye. When I looked at both the accounts they had the exact same post history, but this was the only comment on the same thread. The other comments were dups of each other on different threads, and they didn't appear to post on the same posts anywhere else in their history.

There was otherwise no other information that would have pointed at them performing any bot like behavior.


oh you

I agree, this is good.

The amount of bots on most social media is just staggering.

I had a weird one on Reddit the other day, and in thinking back, I rather wish I had saved it than just reporting it.

There were a comment under one post from 2 different users that was exactly the same. It was a somewhat well though out comment on the shorter side so it caught my eye. When I looked at both the accounts they had the exact same post history, but this was the only comment on the same thread. The other comments were dups of each other on different threads, and they didn't appear to post on the same posts anywhere else in their history.

There was otherwise no other information that would have pointed at them performing any bot like behavior.


> /R/the_donald was consistently getting bullshit content to the front page using bots.

Just curious, how do you know for a fact that bots were involved in boosting the content? I mean, I'm sure that's possible, it's just that the level of energy/enthusiasm there among the users was extremely high to the point that I think it's reasonable to think that the subreddit's success was mostly just people being enthusiastic and wanting to upvote everything.

As far as bot based content-generation goes, that seems a little far-fetched to me given the level of humor and quality of the memes. Human humor to that level seems beyond reach of whatever technology was state of the art in 2015-2016 or even now.


There's a filter on reddit that is a "1hour/top" that basically shows content that's quickly upvoted.

I've watched this tab for many years because it strikes the right balance between new and interesting content.

During the trump election. Everyday there were multiple posts to the sub getting upvoted and this went on for months.

Also, multiple people analyzed the content voting for that subreddit and it significantly deviated from every other major subreddit.

I get you're trying to claim "there's no way to be statistically certain" but the evidence in the Mueller report and elsewhere makes it clear, internet propaganda is a real problem and is documented.


> Also, multiple people analyzed the content voting for that subreddit and it significantly deviated from every other major subreddit.

Here are 2 ways to look at this. There's no way to prove which viewpoint is correct, but anybody who spent time there will know exactly what I'm talking about.

1) One way to explain this is bots.

2) Another way to explain this is you actually saw genuine enthusiasm for the first time. As somebody who has spent a long time on the Internet, I've never seen a large forum like that devoted to some cause that was basically a 24/7 party-like atmosphere with genuine extreme enthusiasm and people having fun shit-posting, not worrying about political correctness, and making memes. If it was the case that the enthusiasm was indeed an outlier, then the level of activity would also be an outlier.

In light of actual evidence, how one interprets this is pretty subjective and minds are already made up. You be the judge, but I think the answer is obvious.


My solution to this was not to look at the front page and heavy RES filtering for my own personal preferences. It worked well.

But eventually the push to gentrify reddit from the venture capitalists demanding profit on their millions made reddit corporate start banning even completely legit, but unprofitably controversial, subreddits. I left after they banned r/gundeals for having the temerity to exist and post links to and discuss firearms and firearm accessory deals online.

All the bot stuff you're talking about came well after the gentrification and switch to user profile centered posting to absorb the Facebook refugees. It seems like the Facebook bots just followed the Facebook users to reddit.


I personally don't care about specific content if it's authentic.

The problem is when a forum becomes a synthetic medium for shills.


You say this like they didn’t already have this issue with jailbait half a decade before td. If they had at all come up with a reasonable policy after experiencing many issues before the Donald. Even if you say ok that was only for nsfw reddits they also had to deal with fatpeoplehate.

It is absurd to say that the problem started with robot or mechanically generated content. They haven’t ever been effective or smart in developing content policies that work.


No one is "anti-free speech", but some companies have decided that overt racism, sexism, anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry violate what they've decided are reasonable terms of service. If users don't like it, there's always 8chan, Stormfront, Gab, Gettr, Truth Social, Parler.

> No one is "anti-free speech", but some companies have decided that overt racism, sexism, anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry violate what they've decided are reasonable terms of service. If users don't like it, there's always 8chan, Stormfront, Gab, Gettr, Truth Social, Parler.

There is just the racism reddit moderation agrees with and the racism reddit moderation doesn't agree with, the misogyny reddit moderation agrees with and the misogyny reddit moderation doesn't agree with.

So when you're claiming that reddit moderations are reasonable, you're just claiming they agree with who you allow and who you doesn't allow being the target of bigotry.

I consider porn a form of misogyny for instance, reddit allows porn, and some very depraved form of porn, so don't claim reddit has reasonable terms of services and fights "bigotry", you just don't care about the former.


this is a transparent gotcha attempt, op wrote "what they've decided are reasonable terms of service" and you pretend that op wrote about their own defintion of reasonable

> this is a transparent gotcha attempt, op wrote "what they've decided are reasonable terms of service" and you pretend that op wrote about their own defintion of reasonable

there is no "transparent gotcha attempt" and it's the op who is making an assumption by using the word "reasonable", it's a qualitative argument the OP is making and it's also called "projection".

it's like you're giggling behind your computer, attempting at rooting out imaginary trolls that only exist in your mind.


op made no value judgement as opposed to you

> op made no value judgement as opposed to you

Of course they did make a value judgement, it's them qualifying whatever TOS on a bunch of depraved porn ridden websites in the realm of the "reasonable". Reddit made no such statement at first place anyway...


that's some leap

Are you entertained? good.

but looking at it like that doesn't make people feel like they're some kind of freedom fighter (freedom to be bigoted trash)

What you say sounds reasonable and reasonable people can agree upon as good ground rules. However, it does not work out in practice that way. For example, Ibram X. Kendi, is a pretty racist person (by the MLK content of one's character definition), but I'm unaware of any major social media platforms censoring or banning him.

Yes. Even if the reedits if the world don't talk about the paradox of intolerance they act according to it and they dampen hate speech to enable free speech.

>No one is "anti-free speech"

Not only are an alarming number of people against free speech, some of them are very powerful. One is even in charge of Biden's new Ministry of Truth.[1]

Also, I remember how 2 years ago the breaking story about the emails found on Hunter Biden's laptop implicating Joe Biden in a Ukrainian money laundering scheme was "completely made up by Russians" and talking about it got you banned from every major social media site. Until it turned out to be legit, which it always was. So would that have been banned due to racism or nazis or transphobia or...some other made up reason to justify banning the discussion of it?

[1] https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10760907/Biden-star...


This is a great example of gas lighting right here.

Dear Octonian, users were banned left and right for suggesting Covid was a lab leak or for making their case for why vaccines were problematic. It isn’t just banning if extreme ideas and race, sex, and religion.

They banned the president of the United States. It’s about power and controlling the propaganda messaging apparatus.


The president of the United States should be treated no differently than other users of the service.

In this case the president repeatedly broke the rules by posting lies and dangerous misinformation. Even given that, his account was allowed to continue to break the rules for far longer than normal peoples would have been.


The parent said it’s only bigotry, the kind you’d find at Stormfront, etc, that gets you banned. So now it’s “misinformation”? Who is the arbiter of that? Which authority gets to judge that?

>Who is the arbiter of that? Which authority gets to judge that?

The owner(s) of the platform or service. As per the terms of service you agreed to in exchange for an account on that platform or service.


You forgot to mention he was banned for the insurrection. "...due to the risk of further incitement of violence..." Was their reasoning, and I think it probably prevented more violence.

I agree. Honestly, since we're talking about Trump's personal account (not even the official @POTUS account) I think he should have been banned much earlier.

I'm just pointing out that the slippery slope argument of "who gets to decide what is an isn't disinformation" on a specific platform which always gets brought up in this case has an obvious answer.


What about all the people using the platform to organize and normalize the BLM riots and looting?

A lot of them got banned? You should always report when you see people planning violence if that is what you are saying you saw.

But what about all the people banned for “misinformation” regarding Covid lab leak, etc? That was not misinformation it turns out.

The platform is pressured to arbitrate a certain way and is a political tool. Musk opening up speech will be a breath of fresh air.


There was a huge spike in unsolicited assaults on Asian americans and asian immigrants so you can see the incitement of further violence logic even if that was so much more nebulous and indirect. Private company and all. Twitter should be nationalized if the first amendment has to apply.

So you can’t criticize China because Asians Americans will see a spike in violence?

> But what about all the people banned for “misinformation” regarding Covid lab leak, etc? That was not misinformation it turns out.

The lab leak hypothesis - or rather the various theories and conspiracies that get grouped under that banner - remain just that as far as I know. I'm willing to consider it misinformation given that the obvious purpose of much of it was to implicate that the Democratic Party/WHO/Fauci in some kind of bioweapons conspiracy or feed off of anti-Chinese xenophobia. But certainly, given that it remains unproven, I would consider claims to the contrary to be misinformation.

And... what about them? Were they lined up against a wall and shot or something? Were they sent to camps? Were their homes raided and their literature burned? As far as I can tell discourse in this area never even faltered anywhere online, it continued and continues unabated still.


I think banning it makes it worse. Now they really think it’s a conspiracy. There’s always going to be stupid ideas around things. You can’t just ban it.

We can't base all of our decision making processes on whether or not they justify the delusions of the paranoid, because anything besides normalizing and spreading their beliefs will. We're already seeing dangerous societal consequences as a result of the accelerated spread of falsehoods and conspiracy theories, so I have to disagree that turning the firehose on even harder is the best possible solution.

And you're downvoting me right now for telling you the actual truth.

Yeah, and while it can be helpful to get answers to things when google fails (which is nearly always nowadays), there's so much astroturfing and shilling that those answers are often worthless.

I don't understand this... Reddit has been very heavily moderated since I've used it (I don't remember dates, but well before 2016). mods can pretty much censor whatever they want for whatever reason they want.

And reddit is still 100x better than old school forums because it's way easier to find the thing you search for

the small, niche, subs still have quality discussion for the most part, but I agree with you on the whole. i've been slowly scaling back my Reddit consumption this year because of it.

https://biztoc.com for anything business-related

Do you prefer Newsmax, OANN, or Fox News?

It's a pro-American global community where very little that attempts to break the echo is allowed to remain visible. It wouldn't be surprising if there is U.S. gov money somehow coming into it via other less-obvious routes.

You ever seen the front page? There is little to no "pro-American" content.

> In addition, two of these articles are identical, while supposedly having been written by 2 different people at 2 different news sources. Jasmine Andrade from Clear Publicist and Christopher Harpur of Daily Scanner somehow wrote identical articles about Jivteshwar on the same day.

Or a press release went out and was republished by 2 different places. This happens often. Sometimes they'll get reworded and sometimes not.

Edit: republished has 1 'l'


Nothing to see here folks.

From Reddit’s press release (https://www.redditinc.com/blog/reddit-secures-funding-to-con...):

> We will raise up to $700 million in Series F funding, led by Fidelity Management and Research Company LLC. and including other existing investors, at a post-money valuation of over $10 billion.


It's [removed] now, what did it say?

User peppustimbus replied with the archive version but is shadowbanned. This is the link:

https://web.archive.org/web/20220513210317/https://old.reddi...

This could just be a wealthy family office, I have first hand knowledge of one such company that would have no website or information online other than a few things in filings but manages several billion dollars.


This post claims that the person controlling the family office is now 18, and is also spending money to be philanthropic. This could be someone who inherited money trying to buy their way into legitimization/importance in the world, tech world especially. Which is honestly a far more reasonable use for inherited money if you want to do something interesting with your life than "bought yacht, coke, women".

If the totally unsupported claim that it was dirty money in the first place, it makes even more sense to spend money to become legitimate himself. The only evidence was his last name, no idea if it's common, is shared by someone who is claimed to be a drug kingpin in an online article.

Certainly a rich young man investing in something he believes in sounds more plausible than Reddit cooking the books and doing so in such a spectacularly bad way.


And down the conspiracy theory rabbit hole we go! I love your theory, and it's very plausible. In a way this just boils down to "was the money 'good' or 'bad'?" and "will the money be used for 'good' or 'bad'?". It's fun to speculate, it's best to know more of the truth.

My hope this will blow up a bit so we get more information (it's in the public's best interest to know more). This is the way all "conspiracy theories" should go, at least those with credible theories to test.


But for most of those there is some information on the family where the money came from. Like they ran some kind of business. In this case the only information to be found on the family is that someone with that family name is a drug dealer. Makes it even more suspicious where the money came from.

Ironically enough I know of a family office for who the most accurate information was a reddit post. It was from some rando on the other side of the world who spent a few months stalking peoples 15 year old facebook profiles to find the connections between them.

It was astonishing that someone who by their own admission was working part time at a gas station making less than minimum wage did more due diligence than anyone they had worked with including a number of three letter agencies.

The post has since been deleted and the account banned.


I also know of a family fund with no public presence that’s an active, large investor with zero presence. You google their name and get results very similar to googling Kharia Capital (I’d say the name of the fund I know, but the lead is a friend and I want to respect his privacy). I’m sure many, if not most family funds do share more info but in this case it could be one who doesn’t.

I guess what I’m saying is that you can’t assume it’s somehow nefarious based on this profile. Also at least one result for Khaira explicitly says it’s a family fund.

https://app.dealroom.co/investors/khaira_capital


Another person with that family name is a Canadian professional ice hockey player. A lot of family names are pretty common, it turns out.

Reveddit.com for all your deleted user/comment needs; just copy/paste the URL of the comment/thread/user.

Edit to add: Huh, it's not showing. Normally it would - https://www.reveddit.com/v/conspiracytheories/comments/up1cw...



It shows zero content

This is actually very curious. People in a reddit group for purposely discussing "conspiracy theories" are getting banned...

If you’ve frequented the conspiracy subs this happens so incredibly often that I was fully expecting the OP to be banned when I clicked the link.

An obvious evidence for conspiracies


> The company’s website is https://www.khairacapital.com. It is mostly blank pages with zero information.

This is Larry Ellison's real estate and investment company: http://www.lawrenceinvestment.com/index.php

Waren Buffet's https://berkshirehathaway.com/ is also famous.

Keeping somewhat low profile is quite normal for these investment firms.


That's stupid that a r/conspiracy post would end up here.

Seems ridiculous to ban the user, remove the post, and lock the comment section. In a conspiracy theory subreddit of all places. This is like the perfect content for a subreddit like that.

Once again proving that the moderation model of Reddit also completely ruins reddit 95% of the time


I suggest another point of view: why companies like Reddit, but also Twitter, do exists? Does ads ONLY justify the invested amount of money?

I bet anyone will answer: "surely not!" and than the point: why we do not came back to Usenet quickly instead of keeping up such services who happen to be unbalanced in usefulness terms?


Not a fake company, it's a family office. Most likely thing is it's a rich kid investing his parents' money. Also possibly it's a rich kid who got rich himself in EMEA so HN hasn't heard of him.

One thing I've noticed with reddit is they constantly push violence to the frontpage and encourage it. Someone calls you a name or uses a racist word, here watch this video of someone getting beat nearly to death for speech and here are 1000 top comments as to why that is perfectly okay and acceptable.

I get the feeling the police state actually wants more violence and crime and therefore encourages it quite frequently. Slavery is legal as long as someone is in jail or prison. They have people working for less than $1/hr just for some extra snacks and perks.


I think your second paragraph might be jumping the gun a bit but yes in my experience the Reddit algorithm also highlights the worst of humans.

Also the "general" Reddit opinion on topics tends to skew super pseudo-intellectual and shortsighted.

One remarkable thing here is the difference between comments and up-votes. It's not unusual to see a post trending where the top comment directly undermines the idea expressed in the post. Either by pointing out it's falsehoods or logical inconsistencies.


A much simpler explanation is the same thing news sites have discovered a long time ago: violence sells.

It's visceral and easily understandable: "somebody is being hurt and shouldn't be, be outraged", or "somebody is being hurt and should be, feel some schadenfreude" both work.

It also feels important and it's easy to understand. Compare, eg, "ZFS Without a Server Using the Nvidia BlueField-2 DPU". A very tiny percentage even knows what is being talked about, and even being an IT pro I don't without reading (a filesystem without a server? What's a BlueField-2 DPU?). And then considerable effort is needed to read such an article and think about whether it actually says something interesting, and whether something is badly wrong somewhere.

So content almost unavoidably gravitates towards subjects that don't require technical understanding, or thought. Outrage is also good for maximizing clicks and passing the link around.


I never see this. Maybe you subscribe to different channels?

Browse to r/worldnews... And that subreddit generally comes on frontpage.

I consume Reddit in generally the same way I consume Twitter - I completely ignore what's trending and only look at the people/subreddits that I've made an explicit choice to follow. Twitter's algorithm gives me more leakage than Reddit's, but I find it to be a tolerable amount.

Just browse r/popular or r/all any day. It gives you the most trending and upvoted posts on the whole site

Literally any post about ukraine will have redditors screaming for genocide against russia, upvoted to top. Same goes for China

I've seen posts that were calling for violence (usually directed against those directly involved, or leadership, which is natural given the circumstances), but I have not seen anyone (with significant upvotes) calling for genocide. If "any post about Ukraine" has this content, I'm sure it will be easy for you to link a handful of examples?

Show me one single post about Ukraine where a top 3 voted comment is “screaming about genocide against Russia”. I will save you the time, don’t bother, because it doesn’t exist.

It exists in their fevered imagination.

If that's what you're seeing, that sounds worthy of recording it and making a blog post. The default frontpage of Reddit is pretty political in my experience, but I don't recall violence being prevalent in any way.

It's my experience as well on /r/all. Obviously my curated homepage is different, but popular or all is filled with violence.

It used to be filled with porn. Not sure why it switched from porn to violence.


I think main problem with Reddit are echo chamber subreddits which exist only to get stuff to frontpage stuff like murderbyaoc etc.

Well the thing I have noticed their 'home feed' in the app (not showing on desktop version) is basically political news and outrage. They seem to be heading the direction of facebook. Pushing outrage content is such a '2020s' thing, I hope it's just a fad.

Reminds me of that song by Jedi Mind Tricks - Shadow Business. He said slavery is not illegal that’s a lie, it’s illegal unless it’s for conviction of a crime.

The TLDR is that the OP thinks it's very "sus" that one of the founders for Reddit's latest Series F round is hard to find any information for.

- The investor, Khaira Capital is run by "Jivteshwar Khaira" who is allegedly an 18yo "Wonderkid", his linked in just has a picture of a Rolex watch

- The other "employees" of the company are also blank

- The website is mostly blank

- There are a few news articles about him, but two are duplicates, the one I read sounds like it was a PR publication.

- There is someone called "Sukhpal Singh Khaira" who is allegedly a drug kingpin, no idea if they are related.

As someone else said, it sounds like a wealthy family office.


FWIW, Khaira (more commonly spelled Khera) is a common North Indian surname. So simply googling Khaira and connecting to any other Khaira is in some ways like googling John Smith.

Yeah, I tend to agree with the "anonymous family office" take (assuming it's even a legit investor - never heard of this viz Reddit's F) vs some shadowy state actor conspiracy. Thought it might be fun to pick over on HN nonetheless, because a big ~anonymous investor in a social network seemed interesting in light current events at $TWTR.

Original Thread (now deleted):

Reddit is being funded by a fake company.

Reddit’s latest Series F of $410 million dollars was funded by two lead investors. Fidelity Management and Research and Khaira Capital.

Who is Khaira Capital? That’s a good question. They basically don’t exist.

The CEO and CIO are listed as Jivteshwar Khaira. Finding information on Jivteshwar Khaira is very difficult. He is supposedly an 18-year-old boy genius, yet somehow has zero identifying photographs and almost zero information publicly available. His Linkedin profile is simply a picture of a Rolex watch and his account is set to private.

In addition, Khaira Capital is listed on their Series F filing as having 51-100 employees, yet not a single one other than Jivteshwar has a profile on LinkedIn. The only contact information whatsoever is listed as the founder himself at j.khaira@khairacapital.com.

The company’s website is https://www.khairacapital.com/. It is mostly blank pages with zero information.

I was only able to find 4 articles about Jivteshwar. Three of them were written on Jan 9, 2022. The other was written on Jan 10, 2022. What an odd coincidence that three completely independent news agencies wrote publications about Jivteshswar within 2 days of each other, shortly before Reddit received millions of dollars in funding from his company.

https://www.dailyscanner.com/entrepreneur-inventor-wunderkin...

https://www.clearpublicist.com/entrepreneur-inventor-wunderk...

https://www.blackbirdnews.com/the-kid-philanthropist-jivtesh...

https://thehiltonian.com/jivteshwar-khaira-philanthropist-pl...

In addition, two of these articles are identical, while supposedly having been written by 2 different people at 2 different news sources. Jasmine Andrade from Clear Publicist and Christopher Harpur of Daily Scanner somehow wrote identical articles about Jivteshwar on the same day.

In these articles, Jivteshwar is described as a boy-genius, a wunderkind, a self-taught engineer and philanthropist, yet somehow no photographs whatsoever of this amazing person could be found online. His accomplishments include:

· Pledged $100M to Columbia University.

· Funded 18 schools in countries with low income families in Indonesia, Bali and Chad.

· Designed a prototype electric plane.

· Maintains strong relations with people on Wall Street (misnamed as Wall Avenue in the articles) and in Silicon Valley.

· While just a teenager, made a quantitative, very long-shorter equity tactic that runs an automatic basis on his laptop or computer. (No clue what this means, but that’s what is written)

· Helped fund some nonprofits in Africa so that they could import covid vaccines and set up free vaccination clinics in low income neighborhoods. We calculate that his contributions have led to about 10,000 people getting vaccinated and about 20,000 free tests being administered.

· organized groups and put together the funds to set up 22 free testing centres in northern India, along with 18 free vaccination clinics as a way to combat the pandemic. For this, he was awarded a commendation by the chief minister and governor of Punjab, and got to meet the prime minister

All of these amazing accomplishments were reported within 2 days of each other, yet know information about this astounding individual can be found anywhere.

In my research, I also googled "Khaira family corruption" and came across this article

https://www.punjabnewsexpress.com/punjab/news/sukhpal-khaira...

which describes Sukhpal Singh Khaira as a drug kingpin. Is this a relation to Jivteshwar Khaira? I don't know, but it would describe where the money comes from.

All in all, what is blatantly clear is that Jivteshwar Khaira and Khaira Capital do not exist. They are a fake company covering up where Reddit's money is actually coming from and some real investigation needs to be done about this.




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