Steve Huffman, a cofounder of online discussion board company Reddit, who yesterday stepped up as its new chief executive following the resignation of Ellen Pao, today took to Reddit for an Ask Me Anything (AMA) dialogue. Fewer than 24 hours into his new job, Huffman is already making provocative statements.
“I want to be very clear: I don’t want to ever ban content,” Huffman wrote (emphasis his) in response to a question about when the /r/coontown subreddit page would go away. “Sometimes, however, I feel we have no choice because we want to protect reddit itself.”
Huffman also briefly and cryptically addressed the controversial matter of the departure of Victoria Taylor, who worked as director of communications and talent at the company.
“I know she was well-loved by many moderators, and I’m very sorry at how everything played out. It could have been handled much better. However, she was let go for specific reasons, which I obviously will not share, and we will stand by that decision.”
Going forward, Reddit may end up announcing a clear policy on what it will and will not permit on the site. After all, that’s part of the legacy of Ellen Pao, who Huffman is replacing. Huffman articulated a “work in progress” for such a policy:
- Nothing illegal
- Nothing that undermines the integrity of reddit
- Nothing that causes other individuals harm or to fear for their well-being.