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Sarah Jeong

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Sarah Jeong
Sarah Jeong XOXO Festival 2016 alt1 (cropped).jpg
Jeong speaking at the XOXO festival in 2016
Born1988 (age 31–32)
South Korea
CitizenshipUnited States
Alma materUniversity of California, Berkeley
Harvard Law School
EmployerThe New York Times
Notable work
The Internet of Garbage

Sarah Jeong (/ʌŋ/; born 1988) is an American journalist specializing in information technology law and other technology-related topics. A member of the editorial board of The New York Times from 2018 to 2019, she was formerly a senior writer for The Verge and a contributing editor for Vice Media's Motherboard website. She is the author of The Internet of Garbage, a non-fiction book about online harassment.

Early life and education

Jeong was born in South Korea in 1988.[1] When she was three years old, her parents immigrated to New York as students and brought Sarah with them.[2] Jeong attended a Southern Baptist high school near Los Angeles, later telling Willamette Week that the Internet helped her to counter religious dogmas of her upbringing such as creation science; "it's how I unbrainwashed myself", she said.[3]

Jeong studied philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley and received a law degree from Harvard Law School,[3] where she was editor of the Harvard Journal of Law & Gender.[4][1] She received a green card while attending college and became a US citizen in 2017.[2]


Jeong writes on law, technology and internet culture.[5][6] She is a former senior writer for The Verge and previously served as a contributing editor for Vice Media's Motherboard website, as well as writing articles for Forbes, The Guardian, and The New York Times.[7][8][9] From 2014 to 2015 Jeong and Electronic Frontier Foundation activist Parker Higgins published an email newsletter called "5 Useful Articles" about copyright law and the Internet.[10][11][12] In 2015, she covered the Silk Road trial for Forbes.[13][14]

Also in 2015, Jeong published The Internet of Garbage, a non-fiction book on the threat of online harassment[15] and responses to it by media and online platforms.[16] The book discusses active moderation and community management strategies to improve online interactions.[17]

In January 2016, Jeong posted a tweet caricaturing Bernie Sanders supporters in response to online attacks against women and Black Lives Matter advocates.[18] A campaign harassing Jeong ensued that lasted for weeks and included threats of sexual violence; it drove her to make her Twitter account private and take an unpaid leave from her job at Motherboard.[18][19]

Jeong was a Yale University Poynter Fellow in Journalism in 2016.[15][20] In 2017, Forbes named Jeong in its "30 Under 30" list for media.[21]

In August 2018, Jeong was hired by The New York Times to join its editorial board as lead writer on technology.[20][22] The hiring sparked a strongly negative reaction in conservative media, which highlighted derogatory tweets about white people that Jeong had posted mostly in 2013 and 2014.[23][24][25] Critics characterized her tweets as being racist; Jeong released an apology,[26][27] saying that the tweets were meant to satirize online harassment toward her as a woman of color.[23][28] Editors at The Verge defended Jeong, saying that the tweets had been disingenuously taken out of context[29][27][23] and comparing the episode to the harassment of women during the Gamergate controversy.[27][26]

In August 2019, Jeong left The New York Times's editorial board, becoming an opinion columnist with the newspaper.[30]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Sarah Jeong". Forbes. Retrieved August 24, 2017.
  2. ^ a b Lind, Dara. "A legal journalist on the 'surreal' experience of becoming a US citizen under Trump". Vox. Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  3. ^ a b Shepherd, Katie (April 3, 2019). "Sarah Jeong Is Watching the Web From Portland. She Sees a Pile of Garbage". Willamette Week. Retrieved April 3, 2019.
  4. ^ "The New York Times Editorial Board". The New York Times Company. Retrieved April 4, 2019.
  5. ^ Greenberg, Andy. "Inside Google's Justice League and its AI-powered war on trolls". Wired. Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  6. ^ Newitz, Annalee (January 15, 2016). "How Twitter quietly banned hate speech last year". Ars Technica. Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  7. ^ "Sarah Jeong profile". The Guardian. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  8. ^ "TODAY: Legal reporter Sarah Jeong to discuss 'How to Cover a Futuristic Cybercrime Trial'". YaleNews. Yale University. October 29, 2015.
  9. ^ Jeong, Sarah (January 17, 2017). "Should We Be Able to Reclaim a Racist Insult — as a Registered Trademark?". The New York Times.
  10. ^ Sankin, Aaron (December 21, 2014). "Why newsletters are the future of online media - The Kernel". The Kernel.
  11. ^ Kulwin, Noah (September 8, 2014). "The Best Newsletters on the Web, the Man Behind Alibaba and More Morning #Mustreads". Recode. Retrieved August 7, 2018.
  12. ^ Schultz, Colin (June 19, 2014). ""Sherlock Holmes" Is Now Officially Off Copyright and Open for Business". Smithsonian. Retrieved August 7, 2018.
  13. ^ McNeil, Joanne (February 6, 2015). "The Internet is Real". The Message.
  14. ^ Roy, Jessica (January 28, 2015). "All the Weird Stuff That's Happened in the Silk Road Trial So Far". New York Magazine Daily Intelligencer.
  15. ^ a b "'Gamergate' is topic of journalist's talk". YaleNews. Yale University. February 5, 2019.
  16. ^ Newitz, Annalee (June 23, 2016). "What if we treated online harassment the same way we treat spam?". Ars Technica. Retrieved August 6, 2018.
  17. ^ Stone, Maddie (September 1, 2015). "Fantastic Science and Tech Books that Will Reboot Your Brain for Fall". Gizmodo. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  18. ^ a b Greenberg, Andy. "Inside Google's Justice League and its AI-powered war on trolls". Wired. Condé Nast. Retrieved August 12, 2017.
  19. ^ "Sanders fans go on online attack". BBC News. January 28, 2016.
  20. ^ a b "Sarah Jeong Joins The Times's Editorial Board". The New York Times Company. August 1, 2018.
  21. ^ "30 Under 30 2017: Media". Forbes. 2017. Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  22. ^ Patel, Nilay (August 28, 2018). "The Internet of Garbage by Sarah Jeong". The Verge. (Introduction).
  23. ^ a b c Wolfson, Sam (August 3, 2018). "New York Times racism row: how Twitter comes back to haunt you". The Guardian.
  24. ^ "NY Times stands by new hire Sarah Jeong over Twitter furor". Associated Press. August 2, 2018.
  25. ^ "NY Times stands by 'racist tweets' reporter". BBC News. August 2, 2018.
  26. ^ a b Uberti, David (August 3, 2018). "Sarah Jeong, The New York Times, and the Gamergate School of Journalism". Columbia Journalism Review.
  27. ^ a b c Sharman, Jon (August 3, 2018). "Technology journalist who tweeted 'cancel white people' is victim of 'dishonest' trolls, claims employer". The Independent.
  28. ^ Rosenberg, Eli; Logan, Erin B. (August 3, 2018). "An Asian American woman's tweets ignite a debate: Is it okay to make fun of white people online?". The Washington Post.
  29. ^ Kludt, Tom (August 3, 2018). "New York Times stands by new hire amid Twitter backlash". CNNMoney.
  30. ^ Byrnes, Jesse (September 28, 2019). "Sarah Jeong out at New York Times editorial board". The Hill. Retrieved September 29, 2019.

External links