After wide criticism, Snapchat apologized and withdrew a filter it offered users to commemorate Juneteenth by inviting users to "smile and break the chains."

The big picture: Users' complaints that they found Snap's feature offensive landed at a moment when the U.S. is reexamining racism in every corner of society, after the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police sparked nationwide protest.

Context: The Juneteenth holiday on June 19 commemorates the end of slavery in the U.S.

  • This year it has been in the spotlight after President Trump scheduled a big rally that day, only to reschedule for June 20 in response to protests.

What they're saying: "We deeply apologize to the members of the Snapchat community who found this Lens offensive," a Snap spokesperson said in a statement. "A diverse group of Snap team members were involved in developing the concept, but a version of the Lens that went live for Snapchatters this morning had not been approved through our review process. We are investigating why this mistake occurred so that we can avoid it in the future."

Flashback: It's not the first time Snapchat has released racially insensitive filters. The company was widely criticized for a Bob Marley filter released on "4/20" that many said amounted to digital blackface.

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Amy Harder, author of Generate
3 hours ago - Energy & Environment

Climate change goes mainstream in presidential debate

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty

The most notable part of Thursday’s presidential debate on climate change was the fact it was included as a topic and assumed as a fact.

The big picture: This is the first time in U.S. presidential history that climate change was a featured issue at a debate. It signals how the problem has become part of the fabric of our society. More extreme weather, like the wildfires ravaging Colorado, is pushing the topic to the front-burner.

Finally, a real debate

Photo: Morry Gash/AP

A more disciplined President Trump held back from the rowdy interruptions at tonight's debate in Nashville, while making some assertions so outlandish that Joe Biden chuckled and even closed his eyes. A Trump campaign adviser told Axios: "He finally listened." 

The result: A real debate.

Biden to Trump: "I have not taken a penny from any foreign source ever in my life"

Former VP Joe Biden pushed back Thursday against allegations from President Trump, saying he had never profited from foreign sources. "Nothing was unethical," Biden told debate moderator Kristen Welker about his son Hunter's work in Ukraine while he was vice president.

Why it matters: Earlier on Thursday, Hunter Biden's former business partner, Tony Bobulinski, released a statement saying Joe Biden's claims that he never discussed overseas business dealings with his son were "false."