Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian resigned from the company's board on Friday as a form of protest, and his departure shined a light on the platform's shortcomings when it comes to addressing hate speech.
Ohanian gave an emotional farewell to Reddit in a video and written statement. Ohanian called for Reddit to appoint a black leader to fill his seat. "I believe resignation can actually be an act of leadership from people in power right now," Ohanian wrote. "To everyone fighting to fix our broken nation: do not stop."
Ohanian is taking a stand in the ongoing racial justice protests that have spread across the country since the death of George Floyd last week. Four Minneapolis police officers were charged in his murder. The ensuing dialog has forced many companies to do more to fight racism in society and within their own companies.
On Friday, Reddit CEO Steve Huffman acknowledged the company's deficiencies in dealing with racist content. Reddit is known as a site where users control thousands of communities dedicated to topics like politics, pets, sports and movies. There also have been communities where hate speech proliferated.
Huffman said the company would respect Ohanian's recommendation to appoint a black leader in his place.