Justice

Snapchat Releases Insensitive Filter

August 10th 2016

By:
Laura Donovan

Snapchat's new anime-inspired filter has backfired miserably, with users saying the social media platform has yet again created a racially insensitive filter.

Snapchat Twitter

On Tuesday, Snapchat released a new filter that some users are calling out for "yellowface":

Snapchat has since removed the filter and a spokesperson told Mashable in a statement that it won't be returning to the app:

"This anime-inspired lens has already expired, and won't be put back into circulation. Lenses are meant to be playful and never to offend."

As ATTN: has noted before, Asians have been subjected to negative stereotypes in media and pop culture for a very long time.

The late Mickey Rooney famously perpetuated negative stereotypes about Asians in the 1961 film version of "Breakfast at Tiffany's," in which he played a heavily criticized character named Mr. Yunioshi. Critics have called Rooney's over-the-top portrayal racist:

Mickey Rooney

The comedy series "2 Broke Girls" received criticism when it was first released in 2011 for its character Han Lee, an Asian man who manages the two main characters at a restaurant and is often mocked for his background.

"Every time Han gets to say something on 2 Broke Girls, the undercurrent is that it’s funny because it’s broken English," Hollywood Reporter writer Tim Goodman wrote in 2011, adding that Han's "head-shaking caricature almost let’s you forget that there’s also Oleg (Jonathan Kite) the Eastern European cook whose only role is to be lecherous and onerous."

Snapchat got in trouble for creating another racially insensitive filter a few months ago.

To celebrate 4/20, Snapchat released a Bob Marley filter, which was swiftly slaughtered on social media for giving users blackface: