Three White Twitter Board Members to Leave over Diversity Measures

AP Photo/Richard Drew
AP Photo/Richard Drew

Three white male Twitter board members, Peter Fenton, Peter Chernin, and Peter Currie, are reported to be leaving the social network company over the next two years amid changes by the new CEO, Jack Dorsey, in order to diversify the board.

Peter Fenton, who currently acts as Benchmark Vice Chairman, and Peter Currie, an investor, are expected to leave after their terms on the board end in 2016. Peter Chernin, the CEO of Chernin Group, is expected to leave after his term ends in 2017.

The board, which previously featured seven men and one woman who were all white before the inclusion of Iranian-born Omid Kordestani last month as chairman, was criticised by former company engineer Leslie Miley in a Medium post. Miley wrote that “every day for almost three years, I have looked forward to making contributions to the platform that enables #BlackLivesMatter, and that amplifies the voices of #BlackTwitter,” but raised concerns about the lack of diversity in Twitters’ staffing.

“There were moments that caused me to question how and why a company whose product has been used as an agent of revolutionary social change did not reflect the diversity of thought, conversation, and people in its ranks,” she wrote, citing facts and figures from Twitters “diversity report” based on the team’s ethnicities and genders.

Just two days after Miley’s Medium post, Dorsey made it clear that the board shakeup was not the only way he would attempt to diversify Twitter since his placement as CEO. According to Re/Code, he invited #BlackLivesMatter leader DeRay McKessen to Twitter headquarters on Friday for a Q&A session.

Twitter is by far not the only company attempting to diversify its ranks and create a more minority-based environment to appease certain audiences, but Dorsey seems to be taking matters a lot more seriously and politically-orientated with his connections to #BlackLivesMatter and other political movements.

With recent allegations of Twitter shadowbanning users that had certain political and social agendas, this news could potentially be quite serious, and could be seen as one more step towards politicising the largely free platform.

There is currently no indication as to who might take over the three positions on the board.


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