Snapchat's Bob Marley lens causes uproar

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Snapchat's Latest Filter Promotes Digital Blackfacing

Snapchat is famous for its face altering filters and on April 4 the company debuted a new lens for 4/20 -- the unofficial holiday for cannabis lovers.

The new filter featured reggae singer Bob Marley and added a hat and dreadlocks to make users look like Marley.

But Snapchat users quickly noticed another feature -- darker skin -- and took to social media to air their frustrations and many labeled the lens "virtual blackface."

Snapchat was also accused of reducing Marley's life and legacy to marijuana use.

See social media reactions below:

Bob Marley Snap Chat
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Snapchat's Bob Marley lens causes uproar
Snapchat's half-baked 420 nod is a Bob Marley blackface filter?! Dude was Jamaican! Did waaaay more than smoke weed.
Can @Snapchat explain to me why there's a Bob Marley filter on 4/20? You realize he did more than smoke weed, right?
I'm disgusted by what I've seen from @Snapchat today, honestly cannot believe this.
I get that @Snapchat probably want to capitalise on 4/20 without DIRECTLY referencing it; but their answer is a blackface Bob Marley filter?
This Bob Marley snap filter is disrespectful to his legacy. @Snapchat
So @Snapchat, every single "pretty" filter is designed to make us look White and now you're doing Blackface with a Bob Marley filter??
Has...has @Snapchat just introduced a blackface filter?
Snapchat's half-baked 420 nod is a Bob Marley blackface filter?! Dude was Jamaican! Did waaaay more than smoke weed.
Soooo @Snapchat capitalising on 4/20 with a blackface Bob Marley filter. Stay classy. 👎👎👎 #NotCool
Done with racist @Snapchat filters. Yesterday's bindi filter, today's blackface filter, and a history of whitewashing "beauty filters"

After the online heat, Snapchat released a statement to The Verge informing the public that the lens was a collaborative project between Snapchat and the Marley estate.

"The lens we launched today was created in partnership with the Bob Marley Estate, and gives people a new way to share their appreciation for Bob Marley and his music. Millions of Snapchatters have enjoyed Bob Marley's music, and we respect his life and achievements."

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