Teen Vogue broke its three-week-long social media silence Wednesday, announcing a new executive editor’s appointment after its previous one stepped down less than a month ago over her anti-Asian tweets.
In an open letter titled “What’s Going on Right Now at Teen Vogue,” the new executive editor Danielle Kwateng introduced herself and announced her appointment, writing that the publication had gone silent on social media because it had been spending time reflecting on its identity and future, an explanation critics deemed insufficient.
We appreciate your patience as we’ve navigated the last few weeks. Please take a moment to read this important letter from our newly appointed executive editor, Danielle Kwateng ⤵️ https://t.co/zx2eFTMeiZ— Teen Vogue (@TeenVogue) April 7, 2021
Kwateng served as Teen Vogue’s entertainment and culture director before stepping into her new position.
Her predecessor Alexi McCammond resigned from the publication on Mar. 18 before she could begin working after several members of Teen Vogue’s staff publicly opposed her appointment over her past racist and homophobic tweets, signing a joint letter to the publication’s management. (RELATED: Teen Vogue Staffers Revolt Over Hiring Of Axios Reporter Who Dates Former White House Aide Due To ‘Racist’ And ‘Homophobic Tweets’)
Two days later, it was discovered that Teen Vogue’s senior social media manager Christine Davitt had also posted now-deleted controversial tweets nearly a decade ago, using the N-word. Davitt was one of the signatories in the letter that led to McCammond’s resignation.
After Davitt’s tweets were exposed, several Teen Vogue followers demanded her termination, to which Teen Vogue responded by going silent on social media until Kwateng broke the silence Wednesday, FOX News reported.
“As history has taught us, society has the capacity to evolve. We’ve seen this countless times throughout history with movements, uprisings, and even renaissances. But accountability is a critical part of that growing process,” Kwateng wrote in the open letter.
“We at Teen Vogue have read your comments and emails and we have seen the pain and frustration caused by resurfaced social media posts. While our staff continued doing the groundbreaking and progressive work we’re known for, we stopped posting it on social media as we turned inward and had a lot of tough discussions about who we are and what comes next,” she added.
Several social media users responded to Teen Vogue’s announcement with criticism that it was dodging questions about what happened to Davitt.
“This is cute and congratulations to [Danielle Kwateng], but we still want to know if Social Media Manager Christine Davitt is still there after she posted racist n-word social media posts that have resurfaced, tweeted journalist Ernest Owens. “Don’t think replacing a Black exec editor for another one deflects this.”
This is cute and congratulations to @danikwateng, but we still want to know if Social Media Manager Christine Davitt is still there after she posted racist n-word social media posts that have resurfaced.— Ernest Owens (@MrErnestOwens) April 7, 2021
Don’t think replacing a Black exec editor for another one deflects this. https://t.co/vQFEoaMOzA
Others on Twitter responded with similar criticisms.
Hey, this is great news now what actions have you taken regarding your social media manager Christine Davitt’s anti-Black tweets? https://t.co/DLVY2jha65— Torraine Walker (@TorraineWalker) April 7, 2021
Hi @TeenVogue ..we’re still waiting for you to do something about Christine Davitt. Racism is not to be accepted, no matter your color. If you hold one person to that standard, you must hold all to that standard.. You’re missing the point, your silence didn’t change anything.— JustEB ???????????? (@JustEBthatisme) April 7, 2021
Not @TeenVogue using the promotion of a black woman to deflect from the anti-black racism, hypocrisy, and lack of accountability. What is happening with miss n-word using #christinedavitt ??? https://t.co/Sn1eRh6HIR— ty ✨ (@tpeyn_) April 7, 2021