Snapchat has caused an uproar after running an ad that “trivialised” domestic violence using the images of Rihanna and ex-boyfriend Chris Brown.
The ad was part of the application’s “Would You Rather?” game, asking Snapchat users to choose between ‘punching’ Brown or ‘slapping’ Rihanna.
After social media users had criticised Snapchat over the ad, Rihanna reacted furiously on Thursday with a lengthy message to Snapchat.
“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,” the 30-year-old singer wrote on her Instagram Story.
“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 [domestic violence] 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.”
The ad was sensitive due to to a much-publicised domestic violence incident between Brown and Rihanna in 2009.
Chris Brown, 28, assaulted Rihanna, 30, in his car on the eve of the 2009 Grammys, about a year into their relationship.
He pleaded guilty to felony assault and served nearly five years of probation and attended one year of domestic violence counseling.
Brown’s lawyer also had some scathing words for Snapchat over the insensitive ad.
“They should change their name from Snapchat to Tone Deaf,” criminal defense attorney Mark Geragos told Us Weekly.
Amid the backlash from various quarters, a spokesperson for Snapchat issued an apology, 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.
“All ads are subject to our review and approval. We reserve the right to reject or remove any ad in our sole discretion for any reason.
“We also reserve the right to request modifications to any ad, and to require factual substantiation for any claim made in an ad.”