Former Reddit CEO Ellen Pao sharply criticized the technology company after publishing an open letter Tuesday condemning racism,media CNET reported. Mr. Bao said the social network knowingly used hatred to make money. “When Reddit cultivates and monetizes white supremacism and hatred all day, you don’t have the right to say BLM,” He said on Twitter, referring to the “Black Lives Matter” movement.
Steve Huffman, The current CEO of Reddit, known on the platform as u/spez, sent the open letter to employees on Monday and posted it on Twitter. “We do not tolerate hatred, racism and violence, and while we have work to do on the platform, our values are clear,” he wrote.
In response, she was the interim CEO of Reddit from late 2014 to mid-2015, saying she felt responsible for criticizing Reddit.
Reddit did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Several technology companies are contributing to the public support for the Black Lives Matter movement after the death of George Floyd last week in the wake of a police violence in Minneapolis. But this support has been accompanied by a counter-attack from critics who say some of these companies have not played an active role in quelling racism in the past, or even allowed it to prevail.
The NFL and NBA sub-forums, two large active forums, also echoed Mr. Baucon’s views and privately protested the site’s policies. Users who navigate to these sub-forums are confronted with messages asking Reddit management to develop stronger policies against bigotry and hatred on the platform.
NFL subreddit was shut down to protest racism on the site.
The NBA’s sub-forum was shut down to protest racism on the site.
Both sites will be shut down for 24 hours.
Reddit has long been criticized for not removing racist forums from its platform, especially the sub-forum sing-along that Mr. Baumon referred to in his tweet called “the_donald.” The subreddit, which was founded in 2015 when Donald Trump announced his presidential bid, has a long history of including conspiracy theories, as well as racist and misogynistic content.
Despite repeated calls to ban “the_donald,” the subreddit survived, despite the the_donald being “isolated” in June 2019. Isolation prevents the sub-forum from appearing in search results and requires that users with verified email addresses must choose to sign in to view content.
During his time on Reddit, Mr. Baucon banned five subReddit sons on the grounds that he encouraged off-site harassment. She resigned in July 2015 after Huffman was replaced by her critics, who resigned in July 2015 after critics accused her of censorship. Huffman also blocked several abusive subreddits while at the helm of the company. But like other tech CEOs, he is trying to strike a balance between abstinence of harmful content on the platform and maintaining the platform as a free speech forum.