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This is why people are talking about FaceApp

Ever wonder what you might look like when you get older, or curious how you would look as the opposite gender? Start with your smartphone.

FaceApp, available on both Apple’s App Store and Google Play, uses artificial intelligence to create “neural face transformations,” such as aging your selfie or turning you into the opposite gender.

You start by pulling up a photo, then applying the filter of your choosing, such as “old,” “young,” “female” or “male.” Users can create an image featuring two photos side by side, or a collage of up to four images.

There are also two “smile” filters, which can add smiles to a selfie. In some cases, the results were a bit unnerving.

%name This is why people are talking about FaceApp%name This is why people are talking about FaceApp

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AcvsI8QM normal This is why people are talking about FaceAppElliot @ Breakfast @revbreakfast

Howling with laughter at me and Jackie on FaceApp 1f602 This is why people are talking about FaceApp

  • 33 Retweets

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%name This is why people are talking about FaceApp%name This is why people are talking about FaceApp%name This is why people are talking about FaceApp%name This is why people are talking about FaceApp

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yccn3pMU normal This is why people are talking about FaceApppat tobin @tastefactory

My life is ruined thanks to FaceApp

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oev xxiE normal This is why people are talking about FaceAppLt. Eddy @LieutenantEddy

Jesus Christ Faceapp is terrifying

  • 4646 Retweets

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Most of the response to FaceApp has been positive, but one filter called “Hot” has been criticized for whitewashing users’ skin tones. The filter is meant to take out blemishes or wrinkles to make your selfies look more attractive. However, some users noted when they tried it, it also made their skin tones whiter.

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GT2kxWop normal This is why people are talking about FaceAppTerrance AB Johnson @tweeterrance

#faceapp isn’t’ just bad it’s also racist…1f525 This is why people are talking about FaceApp filter=bleach my skin and make my nose your opinion of European. No thanks #uninstalled

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EBWeXpIl normal This is why people are talking about FaceAppShahquelle L. @RealMoseby96

So I downloaded this app and decided to pick the “hot” filter not knowing that it would make me white. It’s 2017, c’mon guys smh#FaceApp

  • 9191 Retweets

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In a statement, FaceApp maker Wireless Lab OOO says they are working on a fix that should be ready soon, and changed the name of the filter to “Spark.”

“We are deeply sorry for this unquestionably serious issue,” reads their statement. “It is an unfortunate side-effect of the underlying neural network caused by the training set bias, not intended behavior.”

FaceApp isn’t the first app to run into trouble with filters. Snapchat was criticized for a filter of Bob Marley many claimed was equivalent to “digital blackface,” while a separate filter released months later was blasted for reinforcing stereotypes of Asians.

Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.

 

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