All the marijuana smokers and cool kids celebrating 4/20 today are passing the dutchie pon the left hand side. And because 4/20 has long been associated with Bob Marley — despite the date not being Marley’s birthday nor the anniversary of his death — others are celebrating by using Snapchat’s latest filter which turns users into the reggae legend. Too bad it’s being called digital blackface.
Snapchat debuted the new Bob Marley filter on Wednesday and while they didn’t publicly make the link between Marley and 4/20, it doesn’t take a genius to make the connection. Snapchat users who choose the Marley filter will find the musician’s face superimposed on their mug — locs and Rastafarian headwear included to complete the Marley look. Fans of the musician are pissed at Snapchat for their half-baked idea to blackface every non-person-of-color who uses the filter.
“No, you didn’t just slander Bob Marley!!! Who the hell is running your “filter room”? Who told you blackface was a good idea? WTF”, angrily tweeted Danielle Moodie-Mills in all caps. Continuing, “These so-called ‘innovative tech companies’ better start hiring people of color in droves. @Snapchat your incompetence is unacceptable! SMH.”