A controversial ethnicity filter from FaceApp was immediately taken down following numerous criticisms from netizens calling it racist and offensive. The popular face transforming app released a filter that changed faces into varying races — only to be removed a few hours later.
Netizens took to Twitter to bash the racial-insensitive filters which included Asian, Black, Caucasian and Indian. According to the Telegraph, FaceApp Chief Executive Yaroslav Goncharov explained that it wasn’t their intention to present the filters as racist since there weren’t any negative nor positive connotations associated with any of them.
HOLY SHIT did Faceapp (the app with a “hot” filter which lightens your skin) seriously just add a blackface mode?? WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK pic.twitter.com/HNazTkL45v
— moth dad (@innesmck) August 9, 2017
Erm, no, FaceApp. Don’t do this. pic.twitter.com/d9gZpD9CY3
— Roonil Wazlib (@beggie_smalls) August 9, 2017
According to Mic, Goncharov explained that the ethnicity filters were “designed to be equal in all aspects.” The FaceApp executive further defended the controversial filters stating that these “are even represented by the same icon” to avoid any racial stereotypes.
Despite Goncharov’s explanation, numerous social media users were still against the controversial filters as they expressed their frustration on Twitter. One Twitter user described the filters as “so offensive” while another exclaimed how these were “wrong on so many levels.”
Can someone tell me why the app FaceApp has launched racial filters??? Wrong on so many levels. pic.twitter.com/TkAVpXTm3y
— cass (@cassidysholmes) August 9, 2017
Can’t believe FaceApp added filters for different races. So offensive! Anyway, here’s me: pic.twitter.com/ZF6lD213d9
— Ethan Booker (@Ethan_Booker) August 9, 2017
Given all the negative feedback the ethnicity filters are garnering it is only natural that FaceApp would take action and address the situation. With that said, Goncharov released a statement confirming the removal of the infamous filter.
“The new controversial filters will be removed in the next few hours” Just hours after the controversial filters were released,” Goncharov added. This isn’t the first time FaceApp has received criticism for their filters.
FaceApp were forced to apologize after releasing a filter dubbed “hot” back in April. Numerous social media users complained that this filter associates beauty with being white since it makes faces appear a lot lighter in complexion.