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Forum From the Archives: What a Racist Instagram Account Did to the Town of Albany

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We talk to Dashka Slater about her five years of reporting on the story and her book, "Accountable: The True Story of a Racist Social Media Account and the Teenagers Whose Lives It Changed." (Image courtesy of Dashka Slater)

In 2017 students at Albany High School in the East Bay became aware of a private instagram account created by a student, and followed by just over a dozen more, containing viciously racist posts about fellow classmates. The disputes about why it happened, how to hold the creator and the followers accountable, and what to do about the anger, shame and fear caused by the posts tore through the school and the town. “Whatever you believed about Albany, about America, about teenagers, racism, sexism, social media, punishment and the public discourse on each of these topics, the story of the Instagram account could be marshaled as evidence. It was the incident that explained everything and yet also the incident that couldn’t be explained,” writes Dashka Slater. We talk to her about her five years of reporting on the story and her book, “Accountable: The True Story of a Racist Social Media Account and the Teenagers Whose Lives It Changed”.

Guests:

Dashka Slater, author, "Accountable: The True Story of a Racist Social Media Account and the Teenagers Whose Lives It Changed." - Her previous books include "The 57 Bus: A True Story of Two Teenagers and the Crime That Changed Their Lives"

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