WikiHow ‘Disgusted and Ashamed’ One of Its Illustrations Whitewashed Beyoncé, Barack Obama, and Jay Z

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Illustrated instructional site wikiHow has apologized after Beyoncé fans pointed out a photo of Beyoncé, Barack Obama, and Jay Z was drawn to make them look like white people in a tutorial on “how to become a Congressman.” “We were disgusted & ashamed. It never should have been on wikiHow,” the site tweeted in a series of messages to fans who’d accused them of whitewashing. The illustration in question was a re-creation of a famous photo of the three at a fundraiser hosted by Beyoncé and Jay Z for Obama’s 2012 reelection. WikiHow says it immediately removed the illustration and opened an investigation into whether or not the whitewashing was intentional. According to their findings, the screw-up was an accident resulting from the artist who sketched the drawing not making the race of the people in the photo clear to the person who then colored it in. Even so, wikiHow says this incident is an example of a larger site-wide problem with lack of representation and has vowed to do better: “This doesn’t excuse the fact that we hosted a terrible image on wikiHow and we needed more diversity on that article period. We’re talking with our illustrators to prevent recurrence and encourage diversity. Especially in positions of power.”

WikiHow Apologizes for Whitewashing Beyoncé