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Snapchat criticised for Bob Marley 'blackface' lens

Snapchat has been criticised for launching a Bob Marley lens that superimposes the singer's face, dreadlocks and iconic cap onto a user's picture.

Critics have pointed out that the lens amounts to little more than digital blackface, while others have said it is "racist" and perpetuates a "stereotype".

In a statement issued to The Guardian, Snapchat said it had worked with the Bob Marley Estate on the lens and that it gave people a chance to "share their appreciation for Bob Marley and his music".

"The lens we launched today was created in partnership with the Bob Marley Estate, and gives people a new way to share their appreciation for Bob Marley and his music. Millions of Snapchatters have enjoyed Bob Marley’s music, and we respect his life and achievements," the statement from Snapchat read.

Snapchat has also been criticised for seemingly timing the release of the lens for 04/20 (April 20), an important date in cannabis culture. While Marley used marijuana, a number of Twitter users have pointed out that the day is unrelated to him or his work.

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