Anonymous Memo Claims Facebook's 'Black People Problem' Is Only Worsening
Multiple races and ethnic groups, including Blacks, Hispanics and Asians, also complained about the company in the open letter.
Facebook’s diversity troubles are ongoing according to a Medium post from the social media giant's employees.
An account by the name of FB Blind, which claims to represent past and present Facebook employees, said “things have gotten worse” since former employee Mark Luckie's November 2018 memo alleging Facebook had “a Black people problem.”
“Racism, discrimination, bias, and aggression do not come from the big moments,” the anonymous employees wrote. “It’s in the small actions that mount up over time and build into a culture where we are only meant to be seen as quotas, but never heard, never acknowledged, never recognized, and never accepted.”
“On the inside, we are sad. Angry. Oppressed. Depressed," the post continued. "And treated every day through the micro and macro aggressions as if we do not belong here.”
“Because even when you try to shut us down, our voices matter. And no one will listen unless we speak.” — FB Blind https://t.co/K9o0j6HaAP— Ellen K. Pao (@ekp) November 9, 2019
The employees detailed a number of alleged racist incidents, including an example involving a program manager who was asked by two white colleagues to “clean up after their mess” after they finished eating breakfast. When this person reported the happening to their supervisor, they were advised to dress in a more professional manner.
The blog post also included allegations that supervisors gave unfair negative anonymous feedback to minority colleagues using Facebook’s performance review system, CNBC reports. In January, CNBC detailed how the system hurts employees and can encourage people to play favorites.
On Blind, the app that allows for Facebook employees to post anonymous experiences, one employee allegedly wrote that Black employees “should feel privileged that they were diversity hires and got in the company after we lowered our hiring standards.”
The company’s leaders issued an apology Friday after the FB Blind blog post was made public.
“No one at Facebook, or [anywhere], should have to put it up with this behavior,” said Bertie Thomson, Facebook’s vice president of corporate communications, in a statement. “We are sorry. It goes against everything that we stand for as a company. We’re listening and working hard to do better.”
Facebook’s workforce is mostly made up of white and Asian employees, CNET reports. In the U.S., about 3.8% of Facebook employees are Black, CNET notes, according to the company’s 2019 diversity report.