The pervasiveness of whitewashing - A much needed discussion

Well to be fair I use tan a lot because I’m tan as a European/Indonesian. Many of us don’t have very dark skin colors like most Indonesians but we’re not white either.

There isn’t really a term for the skin color I have so that’s just how I explain it to people, but it’s also a translation barrier because it makes more sense in Dutch.


I re-look at it & it looks so bad that was such a disgusting choice of words… I was fraustrated w the author bc he rlly changed I’m rlly sry if I offended someone w what I said, he didn’t toast himself or become that color at all. He just became darker which confused me. He became mixed which was wrong of the author but what I said was far more wrong.

I rlly didn’t mean to offend anyone w that skin tone, if anyone is offended, I just found it hard to understand how he became that colour he was not at all the color of toast, though, just the color of a mixed person​:white_heart: tysm for pointing that out :relieved:


Exactly. We need more diverse stories with diverse plots in general. For example, one of my stories coming out in 2022, “With or Without You” takes place in Ancient Japan, with an all asian cast as it takes place in their homeland with few characters from differing regions.

While you can be diverse in terms of “race and ethnicity” it’s also important to remind yourself when it’s necessary. For example, Ancient Japan will hardly have other races besides its own. That’s meant to be intentional in the story. But for stories featuring modern day, there’s absolutely no excuse for there to be no diversity, especially if the plot is in a country where it’s a melting pot.

Not only that, but it’s important to be diverse in TROPES and PERSONALITIES. Usually we think of race and ethnicity when it comes to diversity, but it’s also important for every character to differ from one another! If that’s not the case, then every character will seem like a blur.


This. Exactly this.

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great topic!!


I agree 100%. I think I mentioned somewhere in the comments not to use diversity just for the sake of using it. However, diversity comes in different forms :)) Like, LGBTQ+ or characters with a disability. If the story is set at a specific time frame, I understand but I also hate it when people use a time frame as an excuse to write racial slurs and anything like that


But if I’m honest, the Asian community can step their :cat: up too. Many see darker tones as something bad and write them out of their stories/films/dramas etc. But even in countries like Korea, Japan (and especially China with how large it is) there is a large variety in the darkness of their skin. But somehow it is always thought that they should only be portrayed with very light tones.


THISSSS!! It’s so true urgh. It’s up to us to bring the much-needed diversity


Thank you! This discussion has been opened and made with @tc.xo :heart:


Yes!!! Following stereotypes is just lazy writing… I love stories set all around the world w diverse characters ur story sounds rlly good :white_heart:


Exactly, I agree completely. I’ll also bring up another one of my stories as an example (not to promo bc they’re not even out just using it as an example) which is called “Aliens Among Us.” I’m a fellow Arab-Muslim myself, so I thought.

The MC, Aesha, is Egyptian and Muslim. She travelled from Egypt, to the U.S as an “alien” (not literally, it means she is there under circumstances of temporary stay), and it all ties into the sci-fi genre of… aliens. She’s a hijabi and everything. In the intro, you’ll see her speaking Arabic. Whenever she’s worried, with her family, she’ll even use brief words here and there. She has an accent, especially when speaking English.

My point is, be diverse, but if you’re not going to use their unparalleled qualities in some way or another, what was even the point of making them? For the sake of being “diverse”? Putting in an African character, but they don’t adhere to their cultures or values of their upbringing won’t do any good for you “diversity” points. They’re just another meaningless character, different shroud.

I feel like the community complains a lot about things we’re at fault of. It’s not Episode’s fault. It’s not our neighbours fault. It’s not anybody’s fault BUT our own. We’re continuing to support stories like these, even if it’s purely reading them. If we really want to change anything, we have to write stories, writing stories that aren’t full of disregard. We have to read and share stories that are a good representation of what we’d like to see more of.

Episode can’t be at fault, and hear me out. Episode is a company. Whatever its reader would like to see, (aka the popular badboy trope) is heavily pushed in advance to gain money. They’re a business it’s what they do. Everything that Episode is pushing out, it’s because we’re pulling in. We’re reading all these stories that show these tropes, and Episode is only doing what a company does in order to bring in more customers.


No, don’t apologise, please continue. I love that your story is diverse and we need that!!! EXACTLY! Oh my god. EXACTLY. Episode uses algorithms, it’s our fault that we keep reading the same damn stories with like a carbon copy of the characters (I mean maybe a little sprinkle of variation, just a tad). We need to start supporting stories that show diversity in all forms and represent it well, and/or do our own damn stories.


It’s a very old ideology. Light means status and hence beauty. Darker means you are poor and work outdoors. I’m not saying I agree. And it’s changing. Thankfully. But slowly.


Yeah I know, I’m part Asian myself, it just sucks that even nowadays this has to be so prevalent.


As much as if love to see more racial diversity, I know people have stopped reading my stories because I do not have full cc. I do not have full cc because my characters’ ethnicities are important to their stories.

But that is the Issue.
Ofc, whitewashing non-white characters is wrong. It shouldn’t be done. That’s not up for debate. I agree 100%.

But in the end, those stories are doing well because people like them. And that’s the sad part of it. I mean, I’ve had the most ridiculous comments for my half asian/half white MC. Asking to make her black, asking to make her blond. It’s my opinion that as writers, we need to continue writing as we see the characters. Do your research, change things if you’re wrong. That’s how we learn.
I’ve said enough. Thx


Yesss! Exactly, whilst CC can be fun, you as a writer take away the possibility to really fully write a character including their ethnicity, cultural backgrounds etc.


Y’all got me passionate tho, I never talk on the forum unless it’s art related :joy:


At the end of the day, you should write for yourself and what you feel is right. Just because you can customise a character to your liking, doesn’t make it right. If people want to stop reading your story because you decided to do something different, so bit it. Clearly, they are ignorant people and I personally wouldn’t want that. Here, you can see many people who agree with the discussion post and I am sure we would all be more than thrilled to support you


Yes, the ideology that a person who is pale was seen as royalty as they weren’t all day in the sun. As I said before, it’s up to us to change this hideous mentality that has infected us today and continues to do so in so many different forms. We can’t change the minds of racists idiots, but we can teach the generation of tomorrow that all skin tones are beautiful and wonderful.


This, no offense to anyone but I’ve seen this way too many times in stories. What I don’t get is, what’s the difficulty in doing a bit of research before assigning a character of your story their religion, profession etc. If you wanna include diverse characters in your story (which you should) it’s a must that you should learne atleast a little about their practices, the way they dress in respect to their religion, nationality etc.

Okay, maybe, maybe the number of white writers on Episode is more and so they choose to have white mc’s too. But yeah, being “white” doesn’t assign an mc any special advantage or anything like that. So why not try some different things? There are a lot of communities which I feel like, aren’t much represented (especially as Mc’s or Li’s) in stories- the Indian, the Korean, the Indonesian, the Sri Lankan, the Muslim, the Nepali, the Japanese, the Chinese and a lot more.

Very true :clap:t3: