Photography

Photo editing app Gradient is on Fire because of Blackface

Photo editing app Gradient is under fire for a new feature that lets people alter their ethnicity in images, with many slamming it for promoting digital “blackface.”The feature, called AI Face, supposedly allows users to “find out how you would look if you were born on a different continent,” according to Gradient’s website.

The feature was promoted on Wednesday by TV personalities Scott Disick and Brody Jenner — known for their appearances on the reality show “Keeping Up With The Kardashians” — posting altered images on Twitter showing how they would look in “Europe,” “Asia,” “India” and “Africa.” (Some users also pointed out that India is part of Asia.) 

Gradient describes itself as “the next big thing in the world of mobile photo editing,” and names as its founders Vladyslav Urazov and Bogdan Matveev, whom the website describes as “artificial intelligence and machine learning enthusiasts.”

Below is my example:

Other features on the app allow users to test which celebrity they look like, what animal they look like, and turn themselves into portraits. The app also touts a feature called “Ethnicity Estimate,” which purports to use artificial intelligence to analyze someone’s photo and calculate their ancestry.”Simply upload your photo and our exceptionally accurate algorithm will analyze features of your face and tell your ethnic background,” the website says.

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