Matrimony website Shaadi.com has removed its skin tone filter, following backlash from users. The filter would allow users to search for potential partners based on their skin tone.
Shaadi.com has claimed that the option is entirely redundant and doesn’t actually filter out matches based on skin tone, but has removed it as good housekeeping.
The website replaces the South Asian tradition of a matchmaker and helps people intending to get married find a spouse.
Hetal Lakhani, a user from Dallas, first began the campaign to remove the filter in the light of anti-racism protests. She was contacted by another member regarding the optional filter, and was shocked because the company is usually very socially conscious.
Lakhani told BBC News: “I wanted to tackle this in a way that could make a difference so I started a petition. And it just took off like wildfire.
“Within 14 hours we had over 1,500 signatures. People were so glad we were raising the issue.”
Grindr and Perry Street Software recently removed ethnicity filters in response to the Black Lives Matter movement. It was decided that the options were helping to facilitate sexual racism on the gay dating platforms.
However, some critics believe that getting rid of the filters opens minority users up to potential harassment from racist members.
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