A number of students have reported that an open Associated Students virtual discussion on potential adjustments to finals grading policy was “Zoom-bombed” by several users who yelled racial slurs on Sunday, May 31.
The meeting was held by A.S. Vice President of Academic Affairs Adarsh Parthasarathy in response to the May 30 email drive held to demand that UCSD change its finals grading system in light of recent acts of police brutality and protests.
A number of students have corroborated on Twitter that several users entered the meeting and started yelling racial slurs targeted towards black students. It is unclear whether or not these users were UC San Diego students.
Parthasarathy shut down the Zoom call shortly after and took to Twitter to address the situation.
“Our Zoom call was Zoombombed by racists,” Parthasarathy wrote. “I take full responsibility for this as the organizer and cannot apologize enough. I am going to do my best to correct the security settings for the call so that nothing as disgusting as that ever happens again.”
Parthasarathy began a second Zoom call later this afternoon, which required users to be using a UC San Diego Zoom account to enter.
A.S. Vice President of External Affairs forwarded to The UCSD Guardian a petition for students to sign to demand that Zoom create a concrete solution to protect users from racist cyber attacks like the one that happened during the May 31 meeting.
At the time of this article’s initial publication, the university has not yet addressed students’ concerns surrounding the final grading system nor the Zoom-bombing. However, both the university and Associated Students have released separate statements on the recent acts of police brutality and protests.
The Executive Offices of Associated Students, joined by Parthasarathy, Vice Chancellor of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Becky Petitt, and Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Alysson Satterlund in a joint statement to address the Zoom-bombing after this article’s publication.
“We apologize to every member of the community affected by the acts of hate that occurred during the Zoom call, and how they may have impacted members of the Black community at UC San Diego,” the statement read. “We want the Black community at UC San Diego to know that we will not stop fighting for everything that was discussed on the call in order to show, through action, how important their contributions were today.”
Additionally, the A.S. Office of External Affairs released a resource earlier on May 31 titled: “Black Lives ALWAYS Matter: A Legislative Action Guide Focused on Racial Justice,” which includes information on how to get involved with and educated on the broader black lives matter movement.
This is a breaking story, and The UCSD Guardian will continue to monitor it as it develops.
Photo courtesy of Zoom via MGN.