Snapchat removes controversial filter that may have led to car accidents
Snapchat has taken the decision to remove a controversial filter that has been the cause of several lawsuits.
The ‘speed filter’ added a speedometer to pictures and videos that would reflect the speed you were travelling when you took the picture.
Before long, users were competing to see how fast they could travel while using it.
In some cases, this led to serious accidents.
In 2016, a teenager filed a suit against Snap (Snapchat’s parent company), after using the filter and crashing into another car at over 100mph. The victim was left disabled and in need of constant care.
Despite the case, Snapchat kept the filter active – but added a ‘do not Snap and drive’ disclaimer.
The social media titan also added a speed limit at which the filter could be used: 35mph.
A year later in 2017, three men were driving in Wisconsin in the US at over 120mph and opened Snapchat to record the fact. All three were killed when they lost control of the car and crashed into a tree.
A court in California ruled the company could be sued over their deaths.
‘Snap indisputably designed Snapchat’s reward system and Speed Filter and made those aspects of Snapchat available to users through the Internet,’ Judge Kim McLane Wardlaw wrote in the ruling.
‘This type of claim rests on the premise that manufacturers have a ‘duty to exercise due care in supplying products that do not present unreasonable risk of injury or harm to the public’,’ she continued.
Snap has now apparently decided the Speed Filter isn’t a good idea and has removed it from the app.
In a statement, Snap confirmed: ‘Nothing is more important than the safety of our Snapchat community, and we had previously disabled the filter at driving speed.
‘Today the sticker is barely used by Snapchatters, and in light of that, we are removing it altogether.’