Pinterest limiting search results for culturally inappropriate Halloween ideas


Social media platform Pinterest on Thursday announced that it would be limiting recommendations for Halloween costumes that could be considered culturally insensitive. 

The photo-sharing company issued a statement on its website announcing the move, adding that it would be prohibiting “advertisements with culturally inappropriate costumes, and make it possible for Pinners to report culturally-insensitive content right from Pins.” 

The platform also said that certain searches, including “Day of the Dead costumes,” will lead users to information developed by experts and Pinterest employee group PIndigenous “on how to celebrate thoughtfully and respectfully.”

“Costumes are consistently a top-searched term, but many people may not know that certain costumes are appropriations of other cultures,” Pinterest wrote in the statement. “As a platform for positivity, we want to make it easy to find culturally-appropriate Halloween ideas, and bring awareness to the fact that costumes should not be opportunities to turn a person’s identity into a stereotyped image.”

In the announcement, Pinterest also highlighted policy changes implemented in recent years to prevent insensitive content and misinformation on the platform. In 2018, Pinterest announced it would stop running political ads, and in 2020 it launched a search engine for information on COVID-19. 

In August, the company added its first Black member to its board of directors following allegations of racial discrimination from two Black former employees. The women claimed they experienced unfair pay, racism and retaliation. 

Earlier that month, Pinterest’s former chief operating officer Francoise Brougher filed a lawsuit accusing the company of gender bias and wrongful termination.

Pinterest employees also launched a workplace digital boycott, saying in a statement, “Even when unintended, all forms of discrimination and retaliation at Pinterest must stop.”

Tags coronavirus covid-19 Halloween offensive Halloween costumes Pinterest Pinterest Social media

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