Moving from India to the US as a child, she grew up in east Texas as her dad worked as a chemical engineer on oil refineries in the Gulf of Mexico. She graduated from Cornell University and New York University Law School, and spent almost a decade at a law firm working with tech startups before she joined the Twitter in 2011. Indian-born Twitter head of legal and policy issues who writes and enforces the rules for hundreds of millions of internet users. Vijaya Gadde, is behind those offending tweets being removed, users being suspended, or in extreme cases booted off Twitter altogether, if rules are flouted.
Twitter users, however, think it is Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey who is behind the company’s public face, product and strategy, and Twitter’s rules. But in reality it is Vijaya who operates in the background while her influence has helped shape Twitter for most of the past decade.
“I was the only Indian child most of my education until I went to college. You feel voiceless. And I think that that’s kind of what drew me to Twitter-this platform that gives you a voice, and gives you a community and gives you power,” Vijaya recalls.
While Jack Dorsey is the company’s public face, and the final word on all things product and strategy, the taxing job of creating and enforcing Twitter’s rules don’t actually land on the CEO’s shoulders. Instead, that falls to Twitter’s top lawyer, Vijaya Gadde.
This authority also means that Vijaya has the unique job of punishing even the world’s most famous tweeter if need arises. “My team has the responsibility to do that with every single individual who uses Twitter, whether it’s the president of a country or it’s an activist or it’s somebody we don’t know,” she said. “I honestly do my best to treat everyone with that same degree of respect,” Vijaya added.
“We’re trying to do so much more of our work in public, I want people to trust this platform.” she said
Twitter’s commitment to giving everyone a voice, though, has also come with a general reluctance to take it away. Twitter’s decisions in recent years to ban certain users. Vijaya acknowledges the change, saying that the company has come to realize in recent years the responsibility it has to protect the safety of its users, including when they’re not using the product. “I would say that the company has shifted its approach dramatically since I started,” she said.
Slight reference taken from khaleejtimes & vox.com