Weeks after receiving backlash for its new design, Snapchat is under fire again. This time, users are upset about an ad that seemingly promotes domestic violence.
An ad for a game called “Would You Rather” popped up on the social media platform last week. It asked, “Would you rather slap Rihanna or punch Chris Brown?” It included a subtitle that read “Impossible Choices.”
In 2009, Brown pleaded guilty to felony assault and making criminal threats after assaulting Rihanna his then-girlfriend, during Grammy weekend. Many thought the prompt directly referenced the incident and encouraged domestic violence.
“The advert was reviewed and approved in error, as it violates our advertising guidelines. We immediately removed the ad last weekend, once we became aware. We are sorry that this happened,” it said.
Despite the apology, Rihanna took to social media Thursday morning to denounce the brand. “I’m just trying to figure out what the point was with mess,” she posted on her Instagram story Thursday. “All the women, children and men that have been victims of DV in the past and especially the ones who haven’t made it out yet....you let us down! Shame on you. Throw the whole app-oligy away.”
The Verge reported that Snapchat responded to Rihanna’s post in a statement Thursday.
“This advertisement is disgusting and never should have appeared on our service,” the company said. “We are so sorry we made the terrible mistake of allowing it through our review process. We are investigating how that happened so that we can make sure it never happens again.”
Dateline reported that the ad was approved in error and violates Snap’s advertising guidelines. The company said it has blocked Would You Rather as an advertiser.
Some fans have considered deleting the app after Rihanna’s post.
According to The Wall Street Journal, about $800 million of Snap’s market value was lost after Rihanna’s post. The price of shares in the app’s parent company went down 4.5 percent according to Bloomberg.
Snap’s latest decline comes after shares rebounded from Kylie Jenner’s February tweet about no longer opening Snapchat. After the tweet, $1.3 billion in market value was wiped out as shares of Snap declined 6.1 percent.
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