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Best of Nextdoor Twitter account trying to make platform less racist

Posted at 4:59 PM, Jun 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-25 18:06:37-04

We're highlighting people taking action on behalf of racial equality in their everyday life. That includes a woman who started a parody Twitter account centered around the neighborhood network Nextdoor.

“I just found that Nextdoor brought so much levity to my day, at least in my neighborhood, because Glenn Park is a really quiet residential neighborhood in San Fran, so I had this one neighbor that would complain about someone rearranging her lawn gnomes every single day at 4 p.m. like on the dot,” said Jenn Takahashi, the creator of the @BestofNextdoor Twitter account.

Takahashi says she basically started the twitter account to make other people laugh. She posted passive aggressive arguments between neighbors, people helping each other and other funny posts.

However, she says she also got a lot of submissions that weighed heavy on her and highlighted what she described as racism running rampant.

“I always struggled with that because I didn’t want to put that negative energy back out there, but at the same time, I feel like those stories need to be told also,” she said.

Recently, Takahashi tweeted Nextdoor’s tweet saying “black lives matter” with another person's post that got taken down for the same thing. Since then, people have shared even more stories of unexplained censored or deleted similar posts.

A petition was even started to get racial bias training for Nextdoor neighborhood leads or moderators, among other demands.

“I did not realize how completely what a mess their lead program was,” said Takahashi. “These people don’t have any training at all.”

Since all this, Nextdoor has said it will "better educate our neighbors on what is and is not allowed on the platform, drawing a firm line against racist behavior and removing comments and members who violate the rules.”

Nextdoor also ended a feature that allowed users to forward their posts directly to a local police department.