Setting the record straight on our crowdfunding round

( related to Monzo CEO, Investor in Monzo ) #178

No its not really - in my opinion - thats an entirely different case when FOBT can become addictive for some

(Nick) #179

If it was only the headline and the headline only, I would’ve been among the first to point out that the subeditor writes the headline, not the writer of the article.

However, the first two paragraphs or so of the article essentially restate the headline, so in this case the sub can’t be blamed for having an accurate summary as the headline.

Furthermore, I haven’t seen much, if any, trolling or harrassing of the author. I’ve seen plenty of people disagreeing with what he wrote, but that’s not and never has been the same thing as trolling.

I’m also yet to be satisfied that the assertation “Monzo, the fastest growing bank in Britain by new current accounts, has been accused of “going beyond the pale” by allowing its customers to get into debt to buy its shares.” is accurate, as there’s no evidence that the full quote was directed at Monzo. Rather, it appeared to be taken from a general quote regarding how going into debt to buy shares is a bad idea. Thus linking the quote to Monzo very much appears to be an invention of the writer.

(Liam) #180

OK, look, I tried to inject balance, but it’s clear that this isn’t the right place for it.

You’ve seen no evidence of trolling? I messaged somebody on this very thread here who thought it was fair game to publish extract of the journalist’s CV/work-history and invite personal attacks and mocking.

They rightly decided to remove their posts, but I have seen others and some from here posting on twitter. It all reflects very badly on the brand.

It just looks bad to the outside world having a small group of uber-enthusiastic folks with deeply tribal loyalties appointing themselves to be Monzo’s defenders and enforcers.

Playground bully tactics by forum members will hurt Monzo in the end. That should scare investors witless.


The response on here (which has been pretty good to be honest) isn’t because ‘oh noes he said a bad thing about Monzo’ it’s because it was pretty poor journalism. There’s been some mocking but I don’t think it’s been personal, it’s been largely directed at the view he expressed in the article and his responses relating to it and his ability as a journalist. Yes there were some posts that were close to the mark but they were self removed and I believe they would have been properly moderated too.

Your view is still valid, it’s just others don’t agree. There’s been people here and elsewhere who would agree with you too. It’s nice to have differing opinions/views but I don’t think it’s realistic to have a 50/50 split.

At the end of the day it’s a pretty misleading article, deliberate or not.

( related to Monzo CEO, Investor in Monzo ) #182

you had an opinion I had a different opinion - do you never disagree with anybody in life ?

I don’t think its fair to call me a playground bully for simply disagreeing with your view

(Nick) #183

I haven’t seen ‘much, if any’, and I still haven’t. The posts inviting personal attacks and mocking must have been deleted before I saw them. Which is a good thing, that sort of behaviour is clearly wrong and shouldn’t happen. What I remember seeing is a few instances of people calling the article ‘fake news’. A phrase I find abhorrent and don’t think should ever be used, but as its entered the common lexicon so hard to see as straightforward trolling.

What I have seem is plenty of people disagreeing with the article and pointing out errors and misrepresentations.

(Liam) #184

To be fair I didn’t accuse anybody of bullying me at all.

I gave an example of where others had been harassed and bullied.

I have absolutely no idea where you got that from.

(Duncan) #185

If you check all the @replies to him on on twitter, and the comments at the bottom of the article itself, you’ll struggle to find a single troll. The vast majority of people are just stupefied and trying to tell him the one same thing - that the two things are unrelated, that you could loan money from anywhere, and nowhere has Monzo encouraged this (it’s a legal footnote that The Times themselves highlighted - self-fulfilling prophecy!). Apparently Mr Hosking considers “someone disagreed with me on the internet” to be trolling. He also referred to the community forum as a “chat room”, and took a Fry meme literally :man_facepalming: so I don’t think he’s exactly very internet-savvy. A bit Victor Meldrew, a reference that sadly I suspect only he will get.

I think that this tweet of his perfectly sums it up. If we look past the (repeat of) missing the ironic-Fry-meme reference, it belies his worldview: people need to be protected from themselves. It’s paternalistic. A point that Tom pointed out here. I’m not sure that there’s much that can be done when worldviews collide like that.

(🤦‍♂️ 🤦‍♂️) #186

Monzo go on record saying don’t use an overdraft for shares. For some absolute melts this isn’t good enough and monzo should be controlling your spending.

Well done

(Liam) #187

Hi Chris/Tom/Miac.
Big fan of your work.

(🤦‍♂️ 🤦‍♂️) #188


(Duncan) #189

Here’s the problem, in a nutshell: the author wants Monzo to prevent people from harming themselves. But he couches the argument as if Monzo are being exploitative and encouraging this, somehow spinning 3.5 lines of small-print, buried in 70k words into centre stage. But what’s really happening is a clash of paternalistic vs libertarian worldviews. And to top it all off, the same loan → buy shares trade can be done regardless.

(MikeF) #190

Isn’t this sort of statement symptomatic of the problem being discussed?

In your own opinion, you’re injecting balance. Fine. That doesn’t mean everyone else agrees with you and it doesn’t mean it’s true. You might just be presenting a different opinion (or view of an opinion) than has been presented before

None of this stuff is absolute and, in the ineternet age, people seem to be unable to cope with that so cling so much more tightly to their own opinions than was ever the case in the past.

That’s why the internet becomes an in-fight more often than a reasoned conversation.


Except it’s not their Money it’s Monzo’s.


True - But then you are into the situation where your bank is playing the moral police over how you manage your finances.

Would it be ok to use your overdraft if it was an investment in something else?

If it’s a “no” to all investing, what next?

Don’t get me wrong, there are multiple angles you can look at here, and loads of interpretations that can mean different things.

It would have been interesting to see what discussion we would have had if the Times simply asked whether Monzo should stop users from using their overdrafts to buy shares.


How does crowdfunding fit into this? It multiplies the size of the online community willing to participate (which in the case of Monzo is already bigger than those with investments). The £20m the company aims to raise this week could easily add well over 10,000 equity investors in its business (the investment limit is £2,000 per person). Instead of trying to control reputation through relationships with a small number of custodians, the sheer volume of support has the capacity to swamp critical voices.

This post is not intending to argue that Monzo has deliberately constructed a way of managing its reputation online, but instead that crowdfunding has almost accidentally emerged as a powerful marketing tool.

(Excited about Christmas) #194

Erm…“Monzo is actually a price comparison site”?? Cant say I’ve ever had my salary paid into one of those…


If Monzo agreed an overdraft with you, they have decided that they can responsibly lend money to you if you go into an overdraft. They cant dictate what transactions can and cant go into that overdraft. Doing that would be unethical not ethical.


The FT article is already being discussed in another thread, including an interesting reply from Simon:

Shall we keep the conversation over there?

(Jamie 🏳️‍🌈) #197

Except that’s exactly what Lloyds Bank and others do when they forbid you to buy bitcoin using money they lend to you on their credit card.