Instagram, Snapchat pull back the GIF sticker feature in stories owing to racial slur

Giphy has also removed the GIF from the platform.

  • Published: March 12, 2018 3:06 PM IST

Did you wake up today to find you’re the cute GIF stickers gone from Instagram or Snapchat? Well, they have been consciously pulled back, and for a not-so-cute-reason! Both the platforms in the GIF search option, show the trending GIFs below the search bar. Last week, the feature on both Instagram and Snapchat, which is primarily sourced via GIPHY, displayed some extremely racist GIFs as an option.

“This type of content has no place on Instagram. We have stopped our integration with Giphy as they investigate the issue,” Instagram spokesperson told BGR India. The company confirms the change has been made but might take some time to propagate to all users.

TechCrunch also reports Snapchat saying, “As soon as we were made aware, we removed the GIF and have disabled Giphy until we can be sure that this won’t happen again . . . while we wait for Giphy’s team to take a look at it.” The racist GIF was first spotted by users on Snapchat.

Image credit: TechCrunch

Reportedly, the Snapchat spokesperson says that all GIFs in Snapchat are meant to be “rated PG,” meaning they’re mostly suitable for the 13-and-up teens that are technically allowed on Snapchat.

Giphy also appears to have removed the GIF. The Giphy community guidelines prohibit any kind of objectionable content in the first place, however, considering it works like a search engine that indexes the top GIFs on the web, things can slip through.

GIPHY told TechCrunch, “A user discovered an offensive GIF sticker in our library, and we immediately removed it per our content guidelines. After investigation of the incident, this sticker was available due to a bug in our content moderation filters specifically affecting GIF stickers. We have fixed the bug and have re-moderated all of the GIF stickers in our library. The GIPHY staff is also further reviewing every GIF sticker by hand and should be finished shortly. We take full responsibility for these recent events and sincerely apologize to anyone who was offended.”

  • Published Date: March 12, 2018 3:06 PM IST