This week in social media news, Pinterest pledges $1.5 million to support racial justice, TikTok apologizes to black creators for a glitch that made it seem like it was suppressing views of videos tagged with #BlackLivesMatter, LinkedIn’s latest learning report reveals CEOs value learning more since the pandemic, Snapchat decides to no longer promote President Trump’s account on its Discover tab and Reddit’s former CEO calls out the platform for fueling white supremacy.
Pinterest Pledges $1.5 Million Toward Racial Justice Initiatives
On Blackout Tuesday, Pinterest expressed a commitment to taking action against racism and injustice via donations, education and sensitivity toward ads after hosting an open conversation internally with its entire staff.
Why it matters: Pinterest’s stand on Black Lives Matter follows the company’s slight progress toward diversity, which its sixth annual diversity report revealed in January; it increased hiring rates for underrepresented minority employees across the company from 12 percent to 14 percent. The percentage of underrepresented minorities that make up Pinterest employees also grew from three percent in 2015 to nine percent in 2019 to 10 percent in 2020.
The details: Steps Pinterest is taking toward a more racially just workplace include: elevating resources for how parents can talk to their children about systemic racism in the US; delivering content on Pinterest that represents people from diverse backgrounds; not serving ads on Black Lives Matter results; increasing diversity of senior leaders; donating 25,000 shares of stock (worth about $500,000) to organizations committed to racial justice; investing $250,000 to help rebuild local businesses damaged in the protests and donating $750,000 in paid media organizations to support racial justice.
TikTok Apologizes To Black Creators About Technical Glitch On #BlackLivesMatter Videos
After a technical glitch that made it appear as though TikTok was suppressing black creators’ videos around the murder by police of George Floyd, TikTok announced it will donate $3 million from its Community Relief Fund to non-profits that support the black community and $1 million toward fighting racial injustice, though it didn’t specify how the latter funds would be allocated.
Why it matters: TikTok’s message in support of improving black users’ experiences comes after black creators and allies changed their profile pictures in a stance against how they felt the black community was being marginalized on TikTok after “a technical glitch made it temporarily appear as if posts uploaded using #BlackLivesMatter and #GeorgeFloyd would receive 0 views.”
The details: TikTok says it’s committed to examining any of its policies that might diminish diversity on its platform by investing in technology and moderation strategies, establishing a creator diversity council, engaging experts to analyze how its products can better serve people of all background and developing a creator portal to expand opportunities for its broader creator community.
On Blackout Tuesday, the platform silenced its playlists and campaigns on the Sounds page in observance of the initiative.
LinkedIn Report Reveals Time Spent Learning Has Significantly Grown In Pandemic
For its latest report, LinkedIn Learning surveyed 900 learning and development pros and 3,000 learners in May to understand their behavioral patterns in the pandemic and how organizations plan to approach learning strategies in the year ahead.
Why it matters: LinkedIn found that employees are spending 130 percent more time on learning and there’s been a 301 percent increase in professionals joining learning groups since the pandemic, suggesting learning’s strategic role in navigating the pandemic and change as people continue working from home.
The details: Highlights from the report include: 70 percent of respondents said their CEOs are active champions of learning, up from 27 percent in March; 68 percent of learning and development pros say that managers are actively promoting more learning resources to their team than before the pandemic; and 75 percent of learning and development pros expect an increase in social learning, where learners engage with colleagues and instructors around topics.
Snapchat Removes President Trump’s Account From Discover Tab
Snapchat is removing President Trump’s verified account from the Discover tab after concluding that his recent tweets around nationwide protests promoted violence, as reported by The Verge.
Why it matters: Trump’s Snapchat following more than tripled over the past year, to 1.5 million followers, in part due to regular promotion in Snapchat’s Discover tab, as part of a tactic to engage Snapchat’s young audience ahead of the 2020 election. But after Trump’s controversial tweets around the protests of the police killing of George Floyd, which were placed by Twitter behind warning screens for glorifying violence, Snapchat took action; unlike Facebook, which has decided to leave up Trump’s cross-posted tweets on Facebook.
The details: In a message to employees, Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel said:
“As for Snapchat, we simply cannot promote accounts in America that are linked to people who incite racial violence, whether they do so on or off our platform. Our Discover content platform is a curated platform, where we decide what we promote. We have spoken time and again about working hard to make a positive impact, and we will walk the talk with the content we promote on Snapchat. We may continue to allow divisive people to maintain an account on Snapchat, as long as the content that is published on Snapchat is consistent with our community guidelines, but we will not promote that account or content in any way.”
Reddit’s Former CEO Accuses Platform Of Monetizing White Supremacy
Former Reddit CEO Ellen K. Pao took to Twitter to call out Reddit for nurturing “white supremacy and hate all day long” in response to a letter current Reddit CEO Steve Huffman posted about the platform’s intolerance for racism amidst Black Lives Matter protests.
Why it matters: During her time as Reddit interim CEO, from 2014-2015, Pao banned some of the platform’s most abusive subreddits. Since then she’s called out Reddit for the group-trolling associated with the subreddit “The_Donald.”
The details: Pao’s tweet reads: “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 [Black Lives Matter] when reddit nurtures and monetizes white supremacy and hate all day long.”