Reddit Co-founder, Alex Ohanian, who is also Serena Williams’ husband has resigned from the board of Directors.
In a tweet, Ohanian asked Reddit to hire a black candidate to take his place and pledged his future gains from the Reddit stock to serve the black community.
The moves comes two days after a couple of popular subreddits went private while other banned new posts to protest the company’s hate speech policies and show their support for the Black Lives Matter movement.
Moderators of some of the site’s largest communities called out the other co-founder, Steve Huffman, for failing to take action against racism and some of Reddit’s most virulent communities including The_Donald, a pro- Trump subreddit.
Reddit is one of the earliest mass gathering websites online that popularized the idea of unrestricted free speech.
The site has millions of users but Reddit’s stance has gradually changed over the years even banning communities that would have been tolerated before Trump’s election as president.
Ellen Pao, Former Reddit CEO, tok the app to task. Via a tweet, Pao said Reddit should have shut down communities such as The_Donald instead of amplifying it with its hate, racism and violence.
Alex Ohanian’s good actions are admirable but may not do much to erase the harm Reddit has already caused. He said that he needed to resign for his own accountability to his black daughter. Ohanian is married and has a daughter with Tennis Champion Serena Williams.
I’m saying this as a father who needs to be able to answer his black daughter when she asks: “What did you do?”⁰https://t.co/4UiozIOo8P
— Alexis Ohanian Sr. 🚀 (@alexisohanian) June 5, 2020
Reddit CEO Steve Huffman said that the company would honour Ohanian’s request to replace him with a black candidate.
“We’re working with mods to change our content policy to explicitly address hate,” Huffman added. “I want to take responsibility for the history of our policies over the years that got us here, and we still have work to do.”