The pervasiveness of whitewashing - A much needed discussion

@tc.xo

Welcome, welcome. This is the thread about the epidemic of whitewashing, ah yes. The most hated thing, which is practiced every single day. But on a story telling app… this shouldn’t be the case, this shouldn’t be happening here. Get your cup of tea, or any warm beverage, as this post will take you on a wild journey about the ugly truth of character designs.

Ah, the arguable wide range of skin tones (more than any other app), and yet, people still be choosing to use the lighter shades to represent characters which are supposed to be either mixed or from an ethnicity with a darker complexion. I must admit, there are people in real life that are on a lighter complexion scale, whether that be mixed or not.

My issue is, and this is something that a lot of people have an issue with, the whitewashing and fishing of characters. Such as having an Afrocentric hairstyle and then moulding their character’s face with the most Eurocentric features.

With an app that has a lot more diversity than any other story telling app (and trust me, I have tried almost all), it’s still shocking and rather annoying to see the same generic, white character with blonde or brown hair and an LI with tanned skin (usually Italian) male. I am sure there is a lot of stories with diversity, but we have to be real here, majority aren’t and when they are, half don’t even know how to properly represent the character.

Now, I am not saying that we shouldn’t have white characters as main characters, however it is time we use more diversity. I have talked to my fellow good friends, and I have seen a lot of posts about how they wish they could be represented, and accurately. In this day and age, were the internet is accessible to a lot of us, (and if you’re reading this, then it applies to you) there is no excuse for ignorance. You can open topics on the forum, you can search the internet about the ethenicty that you’re choosing to use, look at reference photos and learn about the culture before using them in a story. This is to ensure proper accuracy. Just imagine if someone used your culture and background, then turned it into something that they deemed was ‘okay’, but keeping the features that they thought were ‘the best’.

Moreover, a lot of people have this idea that Asians come in ‘one form’. No, no they don’t. For example, you have south Asians which include Tamils, Indians, Bangladesh, Afgahn and also Nepalese people. This is not limited to only these! But this is just an example. There are also Chinese, Russian, Japanese, Korean (North + South), and Mongolian. We also have Thai people, Fillopians, Vietnamese and again many more but for now I am keeping the list short.

Whilst I think I have spoken enough, I believe that a lot of people have their own experiences and frustrations to share and reasonings why this isn’t okay. Please comment down below, lovelies.

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Oh My! Yes yes yes! I completely agree with you. As a Muslim, I would really appreciate it if people took a look at what most Muslims wear. I really find it annoying when I see hijabis wearing short sleeve outfits etc. Like please respect our religion.

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I am a Muslim too! However, my issue is that people think Muslims come in one form! Like if they’re wearing a Hijab, please respect their modesty. But not every Muslim wears shapeless clothing or covers. It depends on the culture and their decision :))

Our religion has such diverseness in regards to culture, so much information on the internet.

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Yes! I understand what you mean. Like honestly, just because I’m Muslim doesn’t mean I would dress with super baggy clothing and all. I do have a fashion sense :joy: I’m not saying the Muslims wearing baggy clothing are a no but u know, also Muslims come in all shapes and sizes. Some of us wear scarves while the others don’t. It’s similar to Asians, there are so many different Asians to choose from but you should understand their culture before creating a character.

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Exactly! People need to first search the religion, the cultures and then choose which one they’d like to represent and represent them properly and for the love of everything, do not make the female character wear a hijab and then take it off as a form of freedom!!! :roll_eyes:

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Thank you! One thing that bothers me a lot yet I see very often: using poc features to portray ugliness, evil, or a failed plastic surgery through the characters despite them being seemingly white passing

// The authors might not intentionally do it but I guess the internalised racism is so ingrained within us, we tend to not even realize. However this is extremely dehumanising and disrespectful regardless.. It’s about time we recognise our mishaps and work on bettering our work

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Exactly!!!

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PREACH IT :clap:

It gets on my nerves so bad especially the part where you say that they shape POC with very white features only but just a different skin color. That’s not how it works. And just having a POC as a bestfriend is Not Diversity in a story.

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Urgh yes, I completely forgot to add the supportive POC characters in there. Like, that needs to stop… have some scenes with them, show THEIR character development too! Don’t just throw a bunch of characters in a story and call it diversity when we only follow the storyline of the MC and the LI and the other character’s sole purpose is to support the MC like the best friend example or being there to make the episode scene more ‘full.’

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Exactly. It’s like many writers take this copy paste script of:

White female lead
White love interest
Bad boy PoC love interest
East Asian or blonde villain
PoC bestfriend

Just be original. For Pete’s sake (and mine)

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Agree they make a Black charatere and give her White features. Smal nose lips and often blue eyes too, which i know happens but come one its a rarity and on a Dark Black person.

Then there is the. She is not Black she is tan. I hate that. I get some people do tan but still its weird

my own main cast

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Exactly!!! Oh my god

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I hate this. They wanna include a poc but can’t stand having them as the mc, so duh, they make her the overly excited bestie w a button nose, straight hair and super small lips.

Ofc tho! The white mc has full lips despite being 100% American & obviously she has to have curly blonde hair (Ik some ppl have these features but not so many) it’s ridiculous, really. The love interests r always the same too, why? DIVERSITY! make ur characters different per story, don’t b afraid. My mc is from Thai land + America n I like her that way. I have never seen an mc from east Asia… I hope in time we can change that.

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Now, this is diversity in terms of skin colour :relieved: and facial features!!! FINALLYYYYYY!!1

I mean, yes people can be tanned, I tan very easily but I can guarantee you can still tell I am white, I don’t end up looking like a mixed-race person. There is tan and there is an orange tan and then there is black fishing tan. Some people don’t understand this and literally start black fishing their characters and smack the word ‘tan’.

THE ONLY ACCEPTABLE THING is eye colour. Any race can have ANY EYE COLOUR.

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Exactly! All I can say is, we have the power to make things change. We need to educate ourselves, use different cultures appropriately and show representation and not just for the sake of showing.

The amount of posts and people I have heard say how excited they are when they see a person from their culture being represented or even mentioned… it goes to show that we lack diversity and not only cultural wise but in all aspects. It should be normal to have different stories with a wide range of people. Not just the came carbon copied characters with a different name and title story.

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Omg I forgot that I saw a story where the Li started as neutral 02 & then he went on holiday & because 04/05 like, tf? Mc was like “I like him so much more like that, sexy…” I reported the story idk what has this come to?

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Urgh… fetish is a real thing and its disgusting. Good on you for reporting it. Do you remember the story name?

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Not rlly… smth w summer in it I think, I removed it from my app tho bc it was just… ew. I’m glad this thread was made

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I just looked at the skin diffrent he went from milk to choclate.

I’m sorry but neither of those is the best choices of words to use
@aria_writes @line123462

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