Skip to main content

Mozilla CEO threatens to fire person responsible for anonymous hate speech on Reddit

Mozilla CEO threatens to fire person responsible for anonymous hate speech on Reddit


"If they are an employee, they will be fired."

Share this story

An anonymous person complaining about "social justice bullies" at Mozilla will be fired if the person is discovered to be an employee, the company's CEO said today. Speaking at Mozilla's weekly public meeting, Mozilla CEO Chris Beard said Reddit user aioyama had "crossed the line" in a series of postings about women at the company, including recently departed community organizer Christie Koehler. In a series of tweets earlier this month, Koehler complained about Mozilla's lack of diversity in the workplace and its failure to address accessibility issues.

The Reddit user welcomed Koehler's exit. "Frankly everyone was glad to see the back of Christie Koehler. She was batshit insane and permanently offended at everything," the user wrote. "When she and the rest of her blue-haired nose-pierced asshole feminists are gone, the tech industry will breathe a sigh of relief." It was that remark that appeared to trigger Beard's warning today. "When I talk about crossing the line from criticism to hate speech, I'm talking about when you start saying 'someone's kind doesn't belong here, and we'll all be happy when they're gone.'"

Beard said the remarks indicated a discomfort with diversity that he would not tolerate. It's an issue that is particularly sensitive for Mozilla, whose previous CEO resigned last year amid outrage he had donated to groups that oppose gay marriage. "If that's not actually hate speech, it's pretty damn close," Beard said of the Reddit comments. "We are not going to walk that line as Mozilla. So if and when we identify who this person is, if they are an employee, they will be fired. And regardless, either way, they are not welcome to continue to participate in the Mozilla project. It is not who we are."