FaceApp

FaceApp Allowed Users To Try Out Different Races

by Zahara Hill, August 10, 2017

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FaceApp

It’s not even Halloween yet, but a recent update to the photo filtering app, FaceApp, had more people in blackface than October 31st itself.

On Wednesday, FaceApp users received a notification informing them they’d be able to imitate other ethnicities through new Asian, Black, Caucasian and Indian filters. The FaceApp team soon found themselves in hot water. Twitter users wasted no time in calling out the app’s use of race as a tool of beauty modification.

And because Twitter never seems to disappoint, Rachel Dolezal was par for the course when the jokes started flying.

Amidst all the backlash, FaceApp founder and CEO Yaroslav Goncharov initially defended its incorporation of race into the app in a statement to HuffPost.

“The ethnicity change filters have been designed to be equal in all aspects,” Goncharov said. “They don’t have any positive or negative connotations associated with them. They are even represented by the same icon. In addition to that, the list of those filters is shuffled for every photo, so each user sees them in a different order.”

But continued backlash over the next few hours found Goncharov less defensive and a bit more contrite.

“The new controversial filters will be removed in the next few hours,” he told HuffPost later Wednesday afternoon.
The app’s poorly thought out addition wasn’t the first instance in recent months in which the photo app offered questionable filtering options. In April, the app introduced a “hot” filter that let users appear to have lighter skin which received a similar response and was consequentially deleted.
FaceApp, you had one job. Stick to it and make us look pretty in our skin.
 
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