(Bloomberg) -- Donald Trump’s social media company, whose meteoric stock gains made the former president billions on paper before a rapid selloff wiped out more than two-thirds of the advance, took the unusual step of advising investors how to prevent bets against the firm.

Trump Media & Technology Group Corp. issued instructions on how “long-term shareholders who believe in the company’s future” can prevent brokerages from lending their shares to investors who bet against the stock by selling it short. 

The parent of Truth Social, in an online FAQ about short selling, put out a form letter investors can use to opt out of any securities lending programs.

A spokesperson for Trump Media suggested the guidance was in response to investor inquiries, writing in an email, “TMTG believes it has a responsibility to provide factual information in response to the questions its shareholders are asking.”

Short selling doesn’t necessarily cause share-price declines, but it can weigh on the price if there are enough contrarian traders betting against a stock.

Skepticism about Trump Media’s business prospects is widespread, as the firm reported just $4 million in revenue last year and a loss of more than $50 million. That and a valuation north of $9 billion sparked a wave of bets against the stock. 

Some 16% of Trump Media’s public float is sold short, according to data from S3 Partners. Fees for new shorts sellers are between 135% and 215% of the stock’s price —  one of the highest on Wall Street.

Short sellers have long had a dark image in the popular mind, a view that painted Wall Street actors as out for profit at the expense of American companies and their employees. This portrayal played a prominent role in the meme-stock craze of 2021, particularly around GameStop Corp. There, followers of Reddit Inc.’s Wall Street Bets board powered a rally in the video-game retailer with the express intent of forcing losses onto prominent short sellers. 

Gabe Plotkin’s Melvin Capital Management was famously bludgeoned in the episode and the hedge fund later shut down. 

The Trump Media FAQ Wednesday appeared to lean into that negative imagining of short sellers, suggesting the practice was a tussle between the “retail investor” and “sophisticated and institutional investors.”

“If the price of the stock in fact decreases, then the brokerage firm and the sophisticated and institutional investors will have made a profit, while the ultimate retail investor has not,” the filing said.

Julian Klymochko of Accelerate Financial Technologies called the situation unusual and said Trump Media trading bore the hallmarks of less experienced daytraders.

“The shares are held, and traded rapidly, by unsophisticated retail speculators who are looking for fast gambling action in the latest meme stock craze,” he said. “As opposed to fundamental analysts, DJT speculators are more akin to conspiracy theorists, blaming every share price decline on non-existent short sellers.”

While it’s true that short sellers will profit if the target stock falls, the lender profits no matter what happens to the short bet, simply by collecting interest. Brokerages, such as Fidelity and Schwab, have programs where clients can opt in to earn income by loaning securities.

Trump Media also suggested other ways retail investors could prevent having their shares borrowed, including moving shares into a cash account from a margin account, moving them to Odyssey Transfer and Trust Company — the company’s transfer agent — or moving shares to a bank and holding them in a retirement account.

“It’s understandable why a heavily shorted company would like to defeat those who are betting against it,” said Steve Sosnick at Interactive Brokers. “But over time, the best way for a company to do that is to deliver on the bottom line.”

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