Ape Badge For Juneteenth?!?
Changed After Backlash
6/15/2022 9:03 AM PT
The video game developer for “Halo Infinite” is under fire for rolling out a new nameplate to honor Juneteenth … folks are enraged the customization was named after an ape.
The folks over at 343 Industries apparently thought it would be a good idea to title the nameplate — a palette adding a red, black and green colorway to a player’s username — “Bonobo” … which is an endangered primate.
Problem is … folks were angry with the association of apes with Juneteenth, considering the racist and discriminatory history between those words and Black people.
As you know … Juneteenth is now a federal holiday, commemorating the day the last enslaved Americans got the news President Lincoln had abolished slavery.
In response to the backlash, the video game developer renamed the nameplate to “Freedom” and then to “Juneteenth.”
343 Industries says the nameplate was originally named “Bonobo” in reference to a developer tool — and they claim it was an oversight on their end.
Bonnie Ross, the founder and head of 343 Industries, says once they were made aware the nameplate “contained a term that was offensive and hurtful” they immediately made a change with a game update.
Ross adds … “We are a studio and franchise that is committed to inclusivity where everyone is welcome and supported to be their true self. On behalf of 343, I apologize for making a celebrated moment a hurtful moment.”