Sacco, who tweeted before she got on a plane, is back with Barry Diller’s company.
Justine Sacco, the communications exec who was very publicly fired from IAC back in 2014 for an inappropriate tweet, has returned to the IAC family: She’s now running all corporate communications for Match Group, the online dating company that IAC spun off in 2015. It still owns close to 80 percent of the new entity.
Sacco, who was most recently running communications for the daily fantasy sports startup FanDuel, will oversee corporate comms for Match, which includes the business’s online dating properties like Tinder, Match.com and OkCupid.
It’s a notable new job, considering how Sacco left IAC a few years back, where she was senior director of corporate communications. Sacco was fired after she sent an inappropriate tweet right before boarding a flight to South Africa. “Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m white!” she wrote at the time.
The post blew up on Twitter while she was in the air, and Sacco landed to a ton of angry tweets, and the fact that #HasJustineLandedYet was trending on the service.
She became a totem for internet shaming, and was the focus of countless essays. She took some time away from the industry to regroup. During that time, she spoke with author Jon Ronson for a book and offered an explanation.
“To me it was so insane of a comment for anyone to make,” she told him. “I thought there was no way that anyone could possibly think it was literal.” The passage, which was excerpted in New York Times Magazine, continues with a more extensive response from Sacco: “Unfortunately, I am not a character on ‘South Park’ or a comedian, so I had no business commenting on the epidemic in such a politically incorrect manner on a public platform … To put it simply, I wasn’t trying to raise awareness of AIDS or piss off the world or ruin my life. Living in America puts us in a bit of a bubble when it comes to what is going on in the third world. I was making fun of that bubble.”
A statement from Joey Levin, CEO of IAC and chairman of Match Group, welcomed Sacco back into the fold. “With one notable exception, Justine’s track record speaks for itself,” he wrote in a statement shared with Recode. “Very few people in the business world have Justine’s indomitable spirit, tenacity and drive to persevere. That’s the kind of talent we seek. I’m very happy to have her great mind and boundless positive energy back on the team.”
Sacco spent the past few years at FanDuel, and as far as corporate communications go, pretty much ran the gamut. Sacco handled press for the company as it raised — and spent — ridiculous amounts of investor money; battled publicly to keep FanDuel operating in states that considered daily fantasy to be a form of online gambling; and eventually attempted to merge with rival DraftKings. (It was ultimately abandoned due to regulatory concerns.)
Recode – All Go to Source
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