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A Difficult Situation


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Wow. This week has been extremely challenging for all. We want to give you our perspective on this complicated situation, so here goes…

On Sunday at PyCon, Adria Richards felt comments made behind her during a conference session were inappropriate and of an offensive, sexual nature. We understand that Adria believed the conduct to be inappropriate and support her right to report the incident to PyCon personnel. To be clear, SendGrid supports the right to report inappropriate behavior, whenever and wherever it occurs.

What we do not support was how she reported the conduct. Her decision to tweet the comments and photographs of the people who made the comments crossed the line. Publicly shaming the offenders – and bystanders – was not the appropriate way to handle the situation. Even PyCon has since updated their Code of Conduct due to this situation. Needless to say, a heated public debate ensued. The discourse, productive at times, quickly spiraled into extreme vitriol.

A SendGrid developer evangelist’s responsibility is to build and strengthen our Developer Community across the globe. In light of the events over the last 48+ hours, it has become obvious that her actions have strongly divided the same community she was supposed to unite. As a result, she can no longer be effective in her role at SendGrid.

In the end, the consequences that resulted from how she reported the conduct put our business in danger. Our commitment to our 130 employees, their families, our community members and our more than 130,000 valued customers is our primary concern.

We will continue listening to the community, addressing this situation constructively, and serving our customers to the best of our ability.


Jim Franklin is the CEO of SendGrid, Inc., a Foundry-backed infrastructure applications company. Prior to his tenure with SendGrid, Jim was the Vice President of Enterprise Performance Management and the General Manager of the Crystal Ball Global Business Unit of Oracle Corporation. The Crystal Ball Global Business Unit was formed in 2007 as a part of the acquisition of Hyperion Solutions. At Hyperion, Jim served as VP and General Manager. Jim had held the roles of Decisioneering's CEO, CFO and VP of Sales prior to Decisioneering's acquisition by Hyperion. Decisioneering was the maker of the Crystal Ball brand of software.

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