Many Asian-Americans called the app, which allowed users to change their appearance by reshaping eyes or fashioning portraits with Fu Manchu mustaches, racist
Google has removed the app "Make Me Asian" from its Google Play store after weeks of protest from groups that said the game, which allowed users to change their appearance by reshaping eyes or fashioning portraits with rice paddy hats and Fu Manchu mustaches, was racist.
"You can for a few seconds make himself a Chinese, Japanese, Korean or any other Asians," according to the description of the app, created by user KimberyDeiss, in broken English.
A similar app from the same maker, "Make Me Indian," also has been pulled.
Google did not immediately respond to requests from TheWrap for comment, but the app's page on the Play store has been taken down.
Peter Chin, a pastor in Washington, D.C., started a petition on Change.org to have the app removed. It collected 8,452 signatures by the time Google took down the app.
"This may seem like a small victory, but it made an important statement: that minorities will not simply accept dated and offensive stereotypes that are wrongly foisted upon them," Chin said in a statement. "We stood up, our voices were heard, and something changed."
Another online campaign called 18 Million Rising — named after the number of Asian-Americans in the United States — called the app's depictions of Asians and Native Americans "racist and offensive."
Earlier this week, the group started a Twitter campaign with a hashtag, #makemeracist, aimed at getting Google to remove the apps.
The Asian-American Legal Defense and Education Fund celebrated the app's removal on Friday, saying it was "about time."
"It's about time that the racist 'Make Me Asian' app was removed from the Google store," Ujala Sehgal, the communications coordinator for AALDEF, told TheWrap. "The public outcry from the Asian-American community shows that we've had enough of offensive stereotypes and portrayals of Asian-Americans, but we are ready to protest against them, and that our protests will have results."