This Swedish Teen Denies Posing As A Black Woman On Instagram | BY: RICQCOLIA PHILLIPS | Source: Loop | 11/14/18
This is Emma Hallberg. Emma is a 19-year-old model from Sweden with over 200,000 followers on Instagram. Until recently, most of Hallberg's followers believed that she was Black or a person of colour, complimenting her on the grounds of #BlackGirlMagic and a celebration of black beauty. However, she faced a lot of backlash from the Black online community when they found out that she is, in fact, White, something Hallberg herself has confirmed. Responding to a direct message on Twitter, Emma stated that her complexion was as a result of natural tanning. Another term, "Blackfishing", has also been circulating to describe persons like Emma. Blackfishing refers to the practice of a white person presenting themselves as mixed race or racially ambiguous on social media to pander to a particular aesthetic, and as a means of personal gain, therefore gaining more followers.
One Twitter user, Wanna Thompson explained why Blackfishing is just as detrimental as Blackface. In a recent interview, Thompson said that she began noticing the "trend" on Instagram years ago. "It’s clear that a lot of Black women are being overlooked for these white women, so that narrative needs to change," she said. "In regards to Emma, I feel like she has a responsibility to be honest to her followers and be transparent about her look. Nobody is saying you can't get a tan or modify your appearance but she was intentionally ignoring the comments from black women specifically who genuinely wanted honest dialogue." "Her resistance to own up to her 'Blackfishing' makes me wonder if she truly cares about Black voices at all," she added. She also encouraged other users to share other examples of Blackfishing.
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