The designated editor-in-chief of “Teen Vogue” resigned before taking up her new position. Previously, allegations had been raised that Alexi McCammond, 27, made racist and homophobic comments on Twitter ten years ago.
Employees of the “Teen Vogue”, the readership and advertisers had complained to the publisher Condé Nast about the choice of McCammond, the “New York Times” reports. Screenshots of her old tweets had surfaced on social media.
Alexi McCammond had built an excellent reputation among US journalists in recent years. Most recently, she was a political reporter for Washington news site Axios and a contributor to news channel MSNBC. In 2019 she was named aspiring journalist of the year by the Association of Black Journalists NABJ.
Now she should be editor-in-chief of Teen Vogue next Wednesday. Two weeks after her appointment, the Head of Personnel at Condé Nast announced on Thursday that the decision had been made. “After we talked to Alexi this morning, we agreed that it is best to split up so as not to overshadow the important work on” Teen Vogue “,” the New York Times quoted the publisher as saying.
Derogatory tweets about gays and Asians
Because in 2011 McCammond was not very glamorous. The industry magazine “Variety” reports that McCammond wrote in a tweet at the time, among other things, that she woke up with “puffy, Asian eyes”. In addition, according to other sources, she is said to have written other racist comments about Asian characteristics, formulated derogatory stereotypes about Asians and insulted homosexual people.
Were those just stupid statements made by a young person? After all, the tweets stayed online for many years – right into 2019. They have now been deleted.
More than 20 employees expressed themselves angrily in a letter to Condé Nast Verlag. “Our readers are concerned. In times of violence against people of Asian origin and tough struggles in the LGBTQ community, we reject such moods, «they wrote on Twitter via the editor-in-chief’s tweets.
The online community is divided. Those who defend McCammond claim that this is cancel culture against a black woman because of a careless youthful sin. After all, McCammond was still a teenager in 2011. The others say that her appointment to the top of a company that is currently aimed at teenagers is unbearable.
Top executives at the publishing house such as Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour knew from the tweets that the personnel department had checked McCammond before hiring and that she had also apologized for the remarks in internal meetings with Condé Nast, write the US media.
In addition, a photo of McCammond appeared on a right-hand website, which she showed in 2011 in an indigenous costume, according to the New York Times. However, during a review, the photos were no longer found.
“I have apologized for my previous racist and homophobic tweets and will reiterate that there is no justification for maintaining these terrible stereotypes in any way,” McCammond wrote in a letter to the Teen Vogue community in one attempt To clean up the matter. “I’m so sorry for using such hurtful and inexcusable language.”
Presumably, however, it was not the outrage of the employees but rather the advertisers’ money that prompted Condé Nast to part with McCammond. Because the criticism increased, the cosmetics companies Ulta Beauty and Burt’s Bees, large advertisers at “Teen Vogue”, stopped their campaigns.
The personnel discussion also coincided with news of violence against Asian-American citizens in the United States. Several attacks in Atlanta, Georgia, killed eight people in massage parlors, mostly women of Asian descent.
The climate at Condé Nast Verlag was also likely to have been sensitized by a similar case last year, there had been debates about systematic discrimination. The editor-in-chief of the lifestyle magazine “Bon Appétit” had to resign because he was dressed as a Latin American for Halloween.
»Vogue« editor-in-chief Anna Wintour, who is responsible for a large part of the journalistic content of the Condé Nast publishing house, then contacted all employees and admitted that under her leadership there was not enough space given to black people. Some pictures or stories were also hurtful or intolerant.