WallStreetBets are by no means all young people. The demographics of the Reddit forum, now home to more than six million people, is broad and includes unemployed boomers, serious millennials and hyper-online kids. The camaraderie in the community, however, is something that many young traders said were drawn to.

The forum has its own language. They refer to winnings as “tendies,” and it is common to celebrate a big win by dining on chicken tenders. WallStreetBets investors praise those who have what are known as diamond hands, which means they hold their stocks or keep investing even if the stock price falls.

Having diamond hands is viewed as a form of bravery, even if it seems irrational at times, and investors celebrate that determination with diamond and hand emojis in their comments. Conversely, the presence of “paper hands” is seen as a sign of weakness or cowardice and indicates a willingness to fold or sell stocks after a slump. All of that in-crowd jargon is carried over to YouTube, TikTok, Snapchat, and more over the internet, and becomes memes within memes.

Louis Weimer, 20, a student in Pittsburgh, signed up for Robinhood at the age of 18, like many of his colleagues. He liked that it didn’t charge large fees and that it allowed him to trade small amounts of stocks, which was vital for a college student on a budget. He pocketed $ 200 from working in a grocery store and bought stocks in companies he recognized like Apple and Microsoft.

WallStreetBets was on his radar from the start. He came across the community on Reddit and turned them on and off to keep an eye on the trades. Mr. Weimer said he and his friends would often discuss stocks. “My two roommates here at school have investment accounts and we talk about our jobs all the time,” he said.

Like many traders his age, Mr. Weimer was never officially taught anything about the stock market. His information comes from the Internet and from online conversations. He learns how to diversify a portfolio or when to schedule a stock purchase by watching YouTube videos.

Wisconsin high school senior Mr Bannink said he had friends who traded on their parents’ accounts throughout high school reporting gains and losses on Snapchat and Instagram, and he wanted to get involved.