Brands and the People Who Work for Them Are Standing Up to Fight Racism

Brands and the People Who Work for Them Are Standing Up to Fight Racism

We need to change. Not only our way of thinking, but our actions. What we buy and who we buy it from is a political decision in itself. 

Pitchfork, the music media platform, has provided a list of ways you could help fight racism. You can view them all here. And legendary guitar maker Fender has sent out an email containing a letter from their CEO stating that the world would not be the world if it wasn't for all the various cultures of the globe that make and have made music. 

Moment has asked its followers, gear-users, and the learners what their community should do. 

YouTube has pledged a million dollars in solidarity, which I would say isn't nearly what they should dish up. If we look at the white supremacy they're continually supporting with monetized channels, they've got a lot of work to do, and they can't keep throwing money at the problem, hoping it will vanish.

Marques Brownlee shares his thoughts at this moment. 

Facebook's teams are walking out and are publicly rebelling against and because of Mark Zuckerberg's decision to keep racially discriminatory posts up, and as we know, it's the people who make a company. He pledged $10 million for fighting racial injustice. He's posted about these events, and you can read about them here and here.

What can photographers and video makers do to show they stand against racism, bigotry, and fear-mongering? Can it be a certain project or something you try to showcase in all your work? In my opinion, it's in the creative industries where culture is firstly affected. And culture affects actions, and we need to do that right now. 

I am not an American citizen. I am from South Africa, a country with an unfortunate history of apartheid and racism. America has always been the place in view as the ideal, the country you aspire to be like. Now, every country has its faults, and these events showed me that South Africa is not the only country to succumb to the wrath of racism and the deep systemic and global problem it is.

Casey Neistat motivates change.

It should come as a shock, a wake-up call, and a cal to act and be different. So how can we do this? I am no expert, but respect, empowerment, and trade are the basis of any social growth. 

No one wants your aid. They want your trade. Support other businesses that you know are making a difference. Be conscious of who the group is selling you the products and services. When you spend your money with them, you empower them, and they can grow their businesses. 

2020 has been a year of craziness, and now, it should be us standing up to or for something. When you wake up in the morning, what will you be fighting for? Is it a sense of humanity, your culture, freedom, or peace that you want your children to experience when they go out into the world one day?

Wouter du Toit's picture

Wouter is a portrait and street photographer based in Paris, France. He's originally from Cape Town, South Africa. He does image retouching for clients in the beauty and fashion industry and enjoys how technology makes new ways of photography possible.

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Racism is so horrible! Good on these nice people to stand up aginst it! If only we all could love and not be so hateful.

Yay! You figured out how to respond to my posts! I’m proud of you Mr. Bros. I know the internet can be scary and difficult to understand: I’m just learning it myself!

I don’t agree that people should live in fear like you do. I’m sorry you are so scared of The Marx Brothers and black people.

I have many questions for you but sonde you are now here I will ask: why did you downvote me saying racism is bad? Do you want people to be racist? Is that why you think the kkk is not bad?

Thanks! Looking forward to your response!


I don't suppose you see any irony whatsoever in expressing the view that those on the left cause intolerance in speech, whilst concurrently declaring people with certain views should be purged and be made to live in fear, along with their families...

You really are that monumentally stupid.

How truly sad that there are at least 5 people here that negative voted me because I said racism is horrible and that I hope we could all find love.

It hurts that there are so many people here that don’t think racism is bad and that would rather hate than love. You all are very lost and I will pray that your souls find peace.

But for now, shame on you Sam Dasso, Steven Hill, John Doe, Abraham Terason, and Bernie Bros. Be better people in the future.

That's...not what's going on here. I strongly detest racism and paid a price for standing up to my own father's racism against people from the Middle East outside Israel.

I downvoted you because of the possibility that you're literally trolling right now.

The way you write is standard for satire - if you aren't being satirical and this is just some generation gap thing, you should understand that the tone you're writing in is completely anachronistic and does not bode well in modern times.

Either way, naming and shaming with either a bit gone too far or what are nothing else than grotesque assumptions over downvotes as judge, jury, and possibly executioner makes me feel better about writing a response like this.

Tl;dr don't go around judging people unless you want to be judged. If you don't respect that social boundary, nobody else is obligated to do so in turn.

I’m happy you say you don’t like racism. So maybe not negative vote someone saying they don’t like racism either?

You say not to judge but you judge my intent before talking to me. Sorry I’m not hip with new ways of talking on the web but that is no excuse for making a judgement against me without talking to me. Look at how I talk to others here and I am very respectful and positive. You should do the same.

You named yourself when you put the negative vote. Everyone else can see that to right? So why so dramatic like a baby saying I am going to murder you? Everybody has to just relax and be happier and not snap and go overboard! Geez!

What is tI;dr?

You're still ascribing all this nonsense, but I'm the one who snapped?

You consider yourself respectful, but the thinnest veneer of respect means absolutely nothing when you name and shame over literal downvotes. You call yourself positive, yet you're extremely negative when it makes you feel good, no? What else is claiming that someone is making murder threats with absolutely no foundation to base it off and ignoring context when telling everyone to "just relax and be happier" when you're pushing as many buttons as you can?

Your lack of self awareness does not change your intentions - it just makes you the only one unable to see your own angle...

Wow you are a very angry man Mr Doe. Please take a breathe because I am not trying to push buttons. If you dont want to be shown to negative vote then dont negative vote! Easy! I just said what you already did so please have some accountability for your actions and dont blame me for you getting so bent out of shape!

I want you to calm down and know that I am not trying to get you so whiny and irrated. It is not good for your health. Please relax and I hope you learned to be better!


Could you be any disrespectful of the basic lines drawn in public interaction? Yikes.

You are right: I could not be any disrespectful! Thank you for understanding and agreeing with me! I feel like this is a good first step to improving you as a person. Congratulations Mr Doe. With love.

I bet you think you're just smarter than everyone and that nobody does what you do because you're just so uniquely clever. One typo and you're like a vulture to carrion.

This is also not remotely close to reality, troll. I can see why you're running around telling people to improve themselves - it makes you feel better about yourself, doesn't it?

No I’m not smarter or better than anyone. We are all humans and equal! Where was the typo? You aren’t making sense to me.

Helping people does make me feel better about myself, youre right! See that is the power of being positive!

My name is Alfie not troll so please dont call me by a wrong name. I think that is name calling and that is hurtful and cruel. I will pray for you.

There you are! Here is my question from before when you talked about the kkk and how they are not a big problem:

Mr. Bros why do you think there is no white supremacy? Why did you put it in quotes?


Also another nice person asked you question in the Trump article today. Do you need help learning how to respond to people? I know the internet can be difficult to figure out, so I can help you! Because it seems all you know how to do is post anger and mean words and then run away and hide. I think you can do better!


Personally, I hope Trump wins re-election. The whole thing is hilarious.

Remember, Rome was once a republic.


Hey Bernie Bro (deceptive name), you sound as if you like your racism just fine. You've got your racism-doesn't-exist speech dialed in and ready. You don't want to be lectured, but you sure are going to lecture others.

why do I feel that many who rear their head from nowhere to to post their " stop racism" seems like a ploy to take advantage of a situation for their own personal profit/views/traffic and arent really sincere. just jumping on an opportunistic bandwagon. YEA US TOO> WERE WITH YOU!
just like the looter used the protests to loot

Hi here I am! Is “virtual signaling” the same as “white supremacy” in that you don’t think they are real so you put them in quotes?

Also I don’t masturbate-after my husband past on I have not had urges like that. When I think about it it makes me sad and not in the mood.

Why are you talking about me touching myself? You need to focus! Please don’t think of me sexually, Mr. Bros. It’s uncomfortable for me.


Oh sure ... speaking up against racism is ... just like looting!? Are you on drugs? Or are you insane? Because you sound nuts.

FFS, if you don't like the content here hit Fstoppers in the wallet. Cancel your monthly subscription. When they stop getting your payment that'll show them.

I'd wager tutorial sales, subscriptions, and income in general for Fstoppers is down now just like it is for many photographers. They're doing what they can to boost online ad revenue generated by advertiser placement on their site. Posting controversial political opinion pieces vaguely associated with photography gets a lot of comments from Trolls, haters and others wanting to share their opinions and their agendas.
It's a business model for increasing impressions for ads on these pages that's been successful for them in the past.
Seems to still be working.

Make a logic statement based on facts, then get attacked for expressing your 'opinion' only then the 'PC Cancel Culture Mob' then attacks your portfolio pictures ratings to punish you. Good bye freedom of expression.

There was a time some decades ago when there was more interest in civil society, where people often didn't discuss anything regarding politics, religion and such as it was considered impolite and just got people stirred up about things they really couldn't do much about. That was a very long time ago.

Mr Hille I would like you to explain why you downvoted me saying that racism is horrible and that we should love instead of hate. Why do you like racism and hate so much? What happened to you? How can I help?

Using Racism to fight racism is why I down voted you. Supporting radical leftist groups that subvert our constitution will never be something I can get on board. Voting Trump 2020 is all the help I need. Oh and the fact you can't handle a down vote and singled me out for an attack explicitly drives home my original statement. Thank you for the validation.

Please explain to me where you thought I was racist? Your comment is confusing. Why did you bring up the President? He is not racist! Please be more respectful. That also means capitalizing the Constitution. You are being very disrespectful to America.

Why do you think I can’t handle your negative vote? I want to talk to you about why. That doesn’t mean I can’t handle you. You seem easy to handle! And how it is a attack to ask you about your actions? Where I come from, that’s call taking responsibility.

So confusing all you wrote! Are you ok?

Before you make a statement indicating your images are being downvoted because of your opinion, you want to be certain your work is on point.

The mono of the mountains is cool.

One thing about this that I don’t agree with is people calling out brands and companies for not making a social media post about it, like some post on Instagram defines whether your company is racist or not.

Somebody commented on Fujifilm US insta post that they are glad they posted because they had come to the conclusion they are ‘racist’ for not doing it earlier. That’s not the right way of dealing with this issue.

There's some strange dynamics involved in all this. I follow a bunch of IG pet accounts which are as benign as it gets. Just dogs and cats doing every day dog and cat stuff.

One of the larger accounts I followed, "A", was apparently called out by another large account, "B", for not posting a black square in response to the protests occurring in the US.

Account A posted a response shot of their pet and a lengthy comment stating that their pet account was apolitical and they shouldn't be bullied into posting a particular message. Nice pictures of their pet, that's it. Fair enough. The comments seemed largely in agreement. I don't follow those particular accounts for their personal social/political views so it's all good. There is an abundance of other accounts for that.

The following day account A posted a black square and apology.

Day after that account A was deleted.

Looks like account A got it hard from both sides. No winning for them. I don't know what to make of it. I don't want casual accounts to be politicized. They're an escape from the serious issues that are going on.

I guess the further your reach, even in the case of silly cat shots, the more akin to a brand it is and the more you're going to be compelled to 'use your platform' to broadcast a particular message.

As for businesses proclaiming support for any social cause... I'm cynical. It's just marketing in my opinion. I doubt there is any sincerity beyond the commitment to maximize quarterly profits. I could be wrong but it all looks so contrived, especially considering the social and enviromental damage some of these companies cause in other parts of the world.

Just to add to your comment, the minute these non-political/activist accounts join in with whatever cause they are making a point about, they attract exactly the type of people (trolls) that their pages were a safe haven from and there is no going back from that, like in your example the account gets deleted.

People just assume that every single outlet on the planet needs to be getting involved with this movement otherwise they are 'racist'... when in fact some channels just dont want any involvement with it at all as far as their social media space goes.

I visit this site for interesting articles related to photography. This is neither. WTF?
It seem that I need to start looking for a better place to read interesting articles about photography.

Alan, Fstoppers covers video too, not just photography. Professional YouTubers create videos, Moment makes gear for photography and videography and Marques Brownlee is one of the top gear reviewers online. So it's relevant.

My bad! I'll include video on my statement as well.
I visit this site for interesting articles related to photography and video. This is neither. WTF?
It seem that I need to start looking for a better place to read interesting articles about photography and video and don't care to listen to people's opinion outside their area of "expertise".
I maintain that this is neither an article about video nor an article about photography. It's rather an article about political opinion and it has no place in a photography and video that claims to be "... an online community aimed at educating and inspiring photographers, videographers, and creative professionals."

I thought this was a PHOTOGRAPHY website... injecting such politically charged topics is a real turn off. And this is meant for Fstoppers staff