digital blackface


: the use by white people of digital depictions of Black or brown people or skin tones especially for the purpose of self-representation or self-expression
In 2016, the company released a Bob Marley selfie filter as part of "4/20 day" celebrations that darkened users' skin in a caricature of the reggae icon, prompting backlash from users who pointed out the lens was digital blackface.Suhauna Hussain
While reaction GIFs can be hilarious, when white people use GIFs of black people, it can be a form of digital blackface.Megan Bigelow

Examples of digital blackface in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Put simply: digital blackface is 21st-century minstrelsy. John Blake, CNN, 26 Mar. 2023 In fact, Black feminists, Shafiqah Hudson and I’Nasah Crockett, created the hashtag #YourSlipIsShowing in 2014 to bring attention to people in digital blackface and those who create disinformation campaigns targeting Black women. Tiwa Omolade,, 13 Oct. 2021 Also read his September 2020 cover story about TikTok and the evolution of digital blackface. Wired Staff, Wired, 6 Aug. 2021 Is Sweet Brown the victim of digital blackface? John Blake, CNN, 26 Mar. 2023 What is digital blackface? John Blake, CNN, 26 Mar. 2023 There’s even been a concerning increase in emoji-digital blackface. Jennifer Jolly, USA TODAY, 21 Feb. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'digital blackface.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

2013, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of digital blackface was in 2013

Dictionary Entries Near digital blackface

Cite this Entry

“Digital blackface.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Jul. 2024.

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