re: Reactgate Recap VIEW POST


Update: You can read Tatiana's factual account of what went down and draw your own conclusions.

I think number 0. was a hand sign at a conference that is sometimes meant to mean "white power." The Southern Poverty Law Center has a pretty in-depth explanation of the symbol:

... what it’s about most of the time is a deliberate attempt to “trigger liberals” into overreacting to a gesture so widely used that virtually anyone has plausible deniability built into their use of it in the first place.

The problem, of course, is that there are white nationalists, neo-Nazis and Klansmen who have increasingly begun using the use of the symbol both to signal their presence to the like-minded, as well as to identify potentially sympathetic recruits among young trolling artists flashing it. To them, the configuration means WP, for “white power.”

This use of the signal preceded the 4chan hoax that made it go viral. A number of alt-right figures, notably white-nationalist guru Richard Spencer, published photographs of themselves using the symbol as early as 2016. Milo Yiannopoulos adopted the symbol on social media as early as 2015.

Using white power symbols or other forms of hate speech should have no place in the tech community. Unfortunately many people are comfortable with these hate symbols because they don't understand the destructive impact they can have on people. Even if the intent of this symbol was just a joke about the "circle game" like Ken said in his talk, it is still a symbol of hate and it is psychologically damaging to people regardless of what his intent was.

One impact in this case is an incredibly talented designer and speaker (Tatiana) leaving the tech community. I encourage you to read Radhika's perspective on the saga. I think she summed it up perfectly: "This isn't about Ken. This is about supposed allies, folks taking the neutral route, the infinite amount of gaslighting."

Another gem from Radhika's thread:

You can't claim that we brought politics into your pure world of React.

My life is political.

My tech career almost ended because my life is political.

Your life & tech career are political, too. You just don't see it.

This. Is. Technical.


Thank you for adding this, I am not sure if this article is the full story and can be misleading. This is a pretty narrow scope of the full issue that was going on. aryanjnyc, please think about updating this post with further information.


I'm listening. Which further information?

Edit: Added Tatiana's account to timeline.

I think the title might need a tweek too, unless that was all you wanted to focus on. Maybe something a bit more neutral? The event seemed to be the React twitter community as a whole losing a lot of dignity and alienating people. Which caused several account deactivations and then reactivations, as well as causing a lot of irl financial and emotional damage to Tatiana. Thank you for adding the additional information and link to Tatiana Mac's summary of events.


Thanks for the suggestions.

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