Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian Resigns to Help "Curb Racial Hate"

Elias Hubbard
June 6, 2020

Co-founder of Reddit Alexis Ohanian Sr.is stepping down and urging the rest of the board to fill his seat with a Black candidate.

Ohanian, who is married to former world №1 singe tennis player Serena Williams, said that his decision was also explained by the need to look his daughter in the eyes.

Following Ohanian's post on Reddit, the company's Chief Executive Steve Huffman said the company would "honor" his request and is working to strengthen its content policy to combat racist speech on its platform. "I'm doing this for me, for my family and for my country. To everyone fighting to fix our broken nation: do not stop", he wrote before announcing his resignation from the Reddit board. He also announced that he will use future income from his Reddit stock holdings "to serve the black community, chiefly to curb racial hate". Ohanian stepped down from his daily duties at popular social news aggregator and web forum in 2018, but continued to keep a seat on Reddit's board.

"We work for this platform because we care deeply about community and belonging", Huffman said.

The announcement comes after Reddit's former CEO Ellen Pao slammed the company earlier this week. In response to a post from the company about the Black Lives Matter movement, Pao wrote on Twitter, "I am obligated to call you out: You should have shut down the_donald instead of amplifying it and its hate, racism, and violence".

Huffman said that Reddit's current content policy basically boils down to nine rules for what people are not allowed to do on the platform, but it "lists only what you can not do, articulates none of the values behind the rules and does not explicitly take a stance on hate or racism".

Reddit, based in San Francisco, calls itself "the front page of the internet" and has millions of users.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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