Serena William’s Husband Quits Reddit Board, Seeks Black Candidate Replacement
Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, the husband of tennis star Serena Williams, has resigned from Reddit’s board and asked that his seat be replaced with a black candidate.
Ohanian made the announcement on Friday in a video shared on his Instagram page in support of the black community and as an act of leadership against racism:
“I have resigned as a member of the reddit board, I have urged them to fill my seat with a black candidate, and I will use future gains on my Reddit stock to serve the black community, chiefly to curb racial hate… I believe resignation can actually be an act of leadership from people in power right now.”
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Alexis Ohanian who shares two-year-old daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian, Jr. with his tennis star wife said he is doing it for his family.
“I’m saying this as a father who needs to be able to answer his black daughter when she asks: What did you do?
“I co-founded @reddit 15 years ago to help people find community and a sense of belonging. It is long overdue to do the right thing. I’m doing this for me, for my family, and for my country.”
He also pledged $1 million to Know Your Rights Camp, a non-profit started by former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
Ohanian founded social media website Reddit 15 years ago with his college roommates Aaron Swartz and Steve Huffman. The platform which tags itself as the front page of the internet has come under fire in the past for not taking actions on communities on the site that promote racist contents.
Reddit CEO Steve Huffman, in a statement, said Mr Ohanian’s request for a black replacement would be met, while also apologising for the company’s policies.
“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,” he said.
Reddit’s former CEO Ellen Pao blasted the company saying it ‘monetizes white supremacy’ while two of its biggest subreddits staged a blackout and called for leadership to stand down if they don’t tackle ‘bigotry’ on the platform.
“I am obligated to call you out: You should have shut down the_donald instead of amplifying it and its hate, racism, and violence. So much of what is happening now lies at your feet. You don’t get to say BLM when reddit nurtures and monetizes white supremacy and hate all day long”
I am obligated to call you out: You should have shut down the_donald instead of amplifying it and its hate, racism, and violence. So much of what is happening now lies at your feet. You don’t get to say BLM when reddit nurtures and monetizes white supremacy and hate all day long https://t.co/VN5XCiYp5g
— Ellen K. Pao (@ekp) June 2, 2020