Feeds

Google pulls 'racist' Make Me Asian app

Thousands petitioned for removal of Android app

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Google has responded to an online petition by removing an application from its Google Play app store after thousands of netizens suggested it was racist.

“Make me Asian” was one of a series of face-changer apps by a developer calling him or herself “KimbereyDeiss”. The same developer offers a a native American version - “Make me Indian” – and the slightly less offensive “Make me Fat”, “Make me Bald” and “Make me Frankenstein”.

The apps process photos captured by the smartphone camera, allowing users to change the shape of their eyes and colour of skin and superimpose “rice paddy” hats, moustaches and other elements.

All of the apps and the developer’s profile page have now been removed from Play, but some screen shots live on at the link on the developer's name above.

The writing was probably on the wall for the apps when a Change.orgpetition organised by Washington pastor Peter China calling for their removal garnered more than 8,000 signatures. Asian American activist group 18 Million Rising launched a similar online petition.

“Google has tried to defend itself in this matter by stating they are not responsible for the content of apps because Android is open source,” Chin wrote on Change.org.

“But the fact is that Google Play is NOT open source, but a branded store from which Google derives profit and has removed other racist apps, such as a Nazi app in August of 2010.”

Apart from the Change.org petition, the vast majority of user reviews were overwhelmingly negative about Make me Asian. Some 195 users out of 276 awarded the app just one star on Google Play.

Aside from this little hiccup, however, the app store is not doing too badly for the Chocolate Factory, netting it a 311 per cent jump in revenues last year. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Google+ goes TITSUP. But WHO knew? How long? Anyone ... Hello ...
Wobbly Gmail, Contacts, Calendar on the other hand ...
Preview redux: Microsoft ships new Windows 10 build with 7,000 changes
Latest bleeding-edge bits borrow Action Center from Windows Phone
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
Google opens Inbox – email for people too stupid to use email
Print this article out and give it to someone techy if you get stuck
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.