BuzzFeed News

Reporting To You

news

Asian People Are Not Impressed With Their Matches On Google's Museum Selfie Feature

A spokesperson for Google told BuzzFeed News they are always working to ensure their app includes as many different pieces of art as possible.

Last updated on July 3, 2018, at 2:26 p.m. ET

Posted on January 17, 2018, at 10:12 a.m. ET

Last week, people discovered the Google Arts and Culture app's "Is Your Portrait In A Museum?" selfie function.

Damn lol, p good likeness for a pic taken on the fly at https://t.co/GBZ0zMG1A3 #GoogleArtsandCulture

The app will match your selfies with a piece of art from museums around the world. The function has been about for a while but really caught on recently.

Wow #GoogleArtsandCulture selfie match works on cats too!

"Hey, #GoogleArtsandCulture, which painting do you think truly embodies me?" "Hmm. Here, have a battlefield corpse… https://t.co/QGVuP8XS0v

Wow rude #GoogleArts #GoogleArtsandCulture

ADVERTISEMENT

However, a number of Asian people who have used the app have expressed their disappointment with it.

The Google Arts and Culture app thinks I look like a "Beautiful [Japanese] Woman"! :p Get more Asian faces in your… https://t.co/7kt97jClZs

Is no one going to bring up the uncomfortable fact that this #GoogleArtsandCulture app is kind of, um, racist???

...it’s because I’m Asian, right @Google? #Selfie #Google #Arts #Culture #Portrait

Some people have complained that the app lacks a variety of Asian art.

This @Google app feels racist but also there doesn’t seem to be enough Asian art represented in their database.

ADVERTISEMENT

what I've learned so far from Google's arts and culture freaky face app is that there were like two female Asian fa… https://t.co/Zd4aAa2Goz

And thus Asian faces are being matched to a limited number of non-diverse options, i.e., a lot of geishas and not much else.

If you do that whole Google Arts & Culture app portrait comparison as an Asian male, it gives you one of 5-6 portra… https://t.co/ki9GhfxYeR

The only Asian guy on this app I think. #GoogleArtsandCulture

ADVERTISEMENT

This isn't the first time facial recognition apps have had issues with nonwhite users. When Snapchat's filters were launched, people said they appeared to lighten skin, while Russian app FaceApp briefly featured black and yellowface filters.

Friend: Bro, check out this new Google Arts and culture app you take a selfie and it matches you with a piece of ar… https://t.co/2kqYUN4eXm

A spokesperson for Google told BuzzFeed News that they are continually working to make sure the app has the most diverse collection of art possible.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT