Incident 216: WeChat’s Machine Translation Gave a Racist English Translation for the Chinese Term for “Black Foreigner”

Description: The Chinese platform WeChat provided an inappropriate and racist English translation for the Chinese term for “black foreigner” in its messaging app.


New ReportNew ReportNew ResponseNew ResponseDiscoverDiscover
Alleged: WeChat developed and deployed an AI system, which harmed Black WeChat users.

Incident Stats

Incident ID
Report Count
Incident Date
Khoa Lam


A "variant" is an incident that shares the same causative factors, produces similar harms, and involves the same intelligent systems as a known AI incident. Rather than index variants as entirely separate incidents, we list variations of incidents under the first similar incident submitted to the database. Unlike other submission types to the incident database, variants are not required to have reporting in evidence external to the Incident Database. Learn more from the research paper.