A recent Snapchat advertisement that made light of domestic violence using images of exes Rihanna and Chris Brown cost the social media app a ton of money.
CNN reports that Snapchat lost nearly $800 million from its stock market value after dropping 4 percent on Thursday, March 15, in the wake of the 30-year-old singer’s fiery response, which she shared on Instagram, the company’s direct competitor.
As previously reported, the controversial ad asked users whether they’d rather “slap Rihanna” or “punch Chris Brown.” It was particularly sensitive due to the former couple’s tumultuous past. Brown, 28, pleaded guilty to assaulting the “Work” singer the night before the 2009 Grammys. He served nearly five years of probation for the crime.
A spokesperson for Snapchat apologized in a statement to Us Weekly on Wednesday, March 14, saying, “The advert was reviewed and approved in error, as it violates our advertising guidelines. We immediately removed the ad last weekend, once we became aware. We are sorry that this happened.”
The next day, Rihanna released a statement of her own. “Now SNAPCHAT I know you already know you ain’t my fav app out there! But I’m just trying to figure out what the point was with this mess!” she wrote on her Instagram Story. “I’d love to call it ignorance, but I know you ain’t that dumb!”
The Grammy winner continued, “You spent money to animate something that would intentionally bring shame to DV [domestic violence] victims and made a joke of it!!! This isn’t about my personal feelings, cause I don’t have much of them … but all the women, children and men that have been victims of DV in the past and especially the ones who haven’t made it out yet …. you let us down! Shame on you. Throw the whole app-oligy away.”
Rihanna’s comments came just a few weeks after Kylie Jenner complained on Twitter about Snapchat’s redesign. According to Bloomberg, the 20-year-old reality star’s criticism erased $1.3 billion off the company’s market value.
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