INTRO: Popular Indian matrimonial website shaadi.com has reportedly removed its skin tone filter following criticism on online platforms. The development comes at a time when widespread movements such as Black Lives Matter against racism are in full force.
Shaadi.com Alters the Skin Tone Filter
As reported by BBC, the corporate took this decision after Hetal Lakhani, a US resident started a petition on Change.org. In fact, the petition gained 1,622 signatures at the time of writing this article. “Shaadi.com features a color filter that asks users to point the color of their skin using descriptors like “Fair”, “Wheatish”, and “Dark” and allows users the power to look for potential partners on the idea of their complexion,” wrote Lakhani within the petition.
A Small Step In Promoting Equality South Asian Community
“We demand that Shaadi.com must permanently remove its complexion filter to stop users from selectively checking out matches supported their preferred complexion,” Lakhani added. Also, Hetal Lakhani seems to possess started the petition after seeing the Facebook post of Meghan Nagpal, a Shaadi.com user who was trying to find her potential life spouse on the web site. She was apparently discussing how the filter signified the lack of inclusion.
“I emailed them (shaadi.com) and one representative said this is often a filter required by most parents,” Nagpal told BBC.
“It’s just one small step in the ultimate goal of promoting equality within the south Asian community on a global level.”
Upon removing the filter, Shaadi.com said the filter “was not serving any purpose”. According to the firm,