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Snapchat and Rihanna go "ad" it

by Sarah Morris - Copy Editor
Tue, Mar 27th 2018 09:00 pm
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Unless you have been living under a rock the past decade, you know about the 2009 domestic violence incident between singer Chris Brown, who was 19-years-old at the time, and his then-girlfriend, singer Rihanna, who was 20-years-old. Following a Grammy Awards party, the couple got into a huge fight about a text Brown got from a girl he had an affair with years ago. The fight resulted in Brown brutally punching Rihanna in the face repeatedly. The police were called eventually, after Rihanna was knocked unconscious, and she was found with contusions, a black eye, a split lip and even bite marks on her arms and hands.

Reports in the past from neighbors and friends stated that Rihanna and Brown had constantly been in fights that included verbal and physical abuse on both sides for years. Sadly, domestic violence can often happen right in front of our eyes and we might not even know it. 

According to the Iris Domestic Violence Center (IDVS) website, nearly one in three women experiences domestic violence in the United States in their lifetime. The number of women in this country that are being domestically abused is as alarming as it is depressing.

I think that most everyone can agree that domestic violence is a serious problem that should not be taken lightly. Unfortunately, there are some who find humor in the darkest of things where no humor is appropriate. A few of those people were the ones who created an ad for a game called “Would You Rather” that made fun of the domestic violence case between Brown and Rihanna. The ad aired on Snapchat and was seen by many users, including other celebrities who voiced their opinions on the subject.

The “Would You Rather” game ad featured Rihanna and Brown on the top and bottom of the screen, saying “Would you rather: slap Rihanna or punch Chris Brown?” I don’t think it’s that hard to see what is wrong with this — it’s pretty obvious that this ad is not only extremely unethical, but also just idiotic; and the fact that it was approved to be featured on Snapchat is even more flabbergasting.  

Snapchat released an apology almost immediately after it took the ad down, saying, “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.”

However, this half-hearted apology wasn’t enough to convince the former musical couple to leave the situation alone. In fact, Rihanna responded by posting a story on Instagram that said, “Now SNAPCHAT I know you already know you ain’t my fav app out there! But I’m just trying to figure out what the point was with this mess! I’d love to call it ignorance, but I know you ain’t that dumb! You spent money to animate something that would intentionally bring shame to DV victims and made a joke of it!!!! This isn’t about my personal feelings, cause I don’t have much of them...but 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.”

Rihanna told her fans to delete the app to protest its offensive ad. Her die-hard fans  collectively deleted their Snapchats, which caused the app’s stock market value to go down by four percent; a whole $800 million. 

If you ask me, this was a perfect (and savage) response to an ignorant joke, and the fact that Snapchat lost so much market value meant they faced real consequences.

“Would You Rather” was also banned from advertising on the app, and let’s hope that the people involved with the specific ad lost their jobs, because that seems like the most appropriate punishment. 

As Rihanna said, these people are not ignorant. Instead, they are shrewd fools who ultimately ignored societal ethics and must’ve known they’d be punished in some way for the offensive ad. Let’s hope those people sit in a pool of their consequences long enough to realize they are at fault.

 

smorr11@u.brockport.edu