Fujifilm Has Just Dropped the Terms Master/Slave Following Canon and Nikon

Fujifilm Has Just Dropped the Terms Master/Slave Following Canon and Nikon

After the huge response to Black Lives Matter in the last month, camera companies have made it known to me that they have been dropping the terms "master" and "slave" from their photographic lexicon. Canon dropped the terms in 2017, while Nikon let them go in the early 2000s. Now, Fujifilm has joined them in dropping the use due to the negative racial connotations.

I spoke recently with Fujifilm about their use of "master" and "slave" terms, and they initially stated that there was no existing policy in relation to the terms and their historic use in a photographic context. However, after further conversation with Fujifilm Headquarters, there was an update on the situation. Here's what a Fujifilm spokesperson had to say on the matter:

Fujifilm plan to phase out the use of these terms for all our future products. The decision to make sure that future products in development will not use these terms was made recently.

Fujifilm X-T4 body

Fujifilm camera systems and manuals still feature the terms "master" and "slave" but are being phased out

I'm not sure their decision to phase out the terms came after the global response to Black Lives Matter or whether it was due to following suit after both Canon and Nikon both stated that they'd officially dropped the terms years ago. Either way, it seems that all future Fujifilm photography kit will not feature the terms, presumably in favor of other terms that have already been suggested by camera companies and the public, including "remote" and "commander". 

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Robert Nurse's picture

Now, if these companies are resolute in supporting SUBSTANTIVE changes both within and outside their organizations, that will go much further than these meaningless measures. Merely avoiding bad press isn't what the protests were about.

Matthew Lacy's picture

And . . . cue the endless comments.

T Scarb's picture

Gestures that appease with no real change... 50yrs of promises.

T Scarb's picture

Gestures that appease with no real change... 50yrs of promises.

Kevin Westby's picture

Critical thinking has left our society.

Bruce G's picture

I'll give a journalistic photography project to those that wish to pursue it. When we see all the migrant workers in the fields of America's farmland, Is that not a master/slave relationship? Was NAFTA formed to be a master/slave entity?

Alex Petsen's picture


Scoops Fantastic's picture

I'm black and those terms have never offended me. This is not meaningful change. Fund the people fighting against actual systemic racism. Fight the assholes making laws that hurt POC and fight the banks that give POC higher interest rates or out right deny home loans/business loans just because they don't believe POC should be able to own a home or a business. Demand actual meaningful change from Police departments and governments and reduce funding to police departments. use that money to fund people and organizations who can actually take care of situations without shooting first and asking questions later or asking no questions at all. Nurses handle situations like buffed dudes hopped up on PCP with out killing them. Why can't cops? I think they are calling the wrong people snowflakes if a police officer pulls a black woman over for failure to signal and then pulls a taser on her because she films the interaction while the officer shouts "I'm going to light you up!" while attempting to drag her out of her car just because she failed to signal... Cops have short fuses and are trained to escalate situations so they can meet quotas, incarcerate, and get fine and fee money by cycling people through the court systems that they have no hope of defending against (because it's designed that way) then sending them to private prisons to be profited off of. It's modern slavery. This stuff happens to whites too not just POC. it's a problem the entire country faces.

mark wilkins's picture

How about "Top" and "Bottom" ?

Scott Ruffner's picture

White balance must go! A racist term!

Brad Smith's picture

See...this is actually the problem. Yes, it's a small change...but it's change. And why wouldn't you be against any change away from an obviously racist and loaded term? And then there's the other side....the white guy who thinks he's funny by bringing something obviously not problematic into the discussion in order to marginalize it. He's the face of white privellege.

Robert Nurse's picture

But, "master" and "slave" have a long standing history of negative connotation in this country where as "white" does not.

c0ld c0ne's picture

Aren't these products sold worldwide though?

Alan Fletcher's picture

Companies are in business to make a profit and they should focus on getting great products to consumers while making that profit.
Getting companies involved in politics is a risky business and should be avoided at all costs as they risk alienating their customers and loosing market as many have already done. The example of Gillette comes to mind.
Pretty soon we won't be able to speak without offending someone.
I think we all need to grow up and cut this out!
Progress is made by real actions and not erasing words and people.

Matthew Lacy's picture

I think that the profits could be increased by all of this. The people on the right or center will just say "this is dump, pointless, etc." and buy it anyway. Meanwhile the left is appeased and the company gets more sales from them.

Robert Nurse's picture

This terminology doesn't offend me because I know the context. But, sadly, such terms and product imagery affects people in ways they don't even realize. Being continually bombarded by such notions, going unanswered, unexplained and without historical fact, you've get biases and we know the rest of the story. Rather than remove these labels, why not briefly explain your use of them or point people to references?

Miles Long's picture

Pure stupidity. The bullies who perpetuate this are evil. The weak idiots who fall in line just empower the evil.

Brad Smith's picture

what about the ignorant ones who just try and dismiss it?

Felix C's picture

It is used in electronics all over the place, I will be glad when they change it there also.

Bruce G's picture

If I took offense to everything you say, I would be as empty as you.

chris bryant's picture

Fujifilm, Nikon and Canon are Slaves to contemporary liberalist morality, their new Master.