What Is 'Blackfishing' And Why Is Bhad Bhabie Being Slammed For It?

Bhad Bhabie, aka Danielle Bregoli aka Cassh Me Ousside girl, has found herself in hot water once again.

This time, the 17-year-old teen rapper -- who was made famous after a wild appearance on Dr. Phil several years ago -- has been accused of darkening her skin in a number of videos posted to her Instagram, an act that has been referred to as "blackfishing".

Social media users were quick to call-out the star on Twitter and in the video comments, with one Twitter user posting: "How TF Bhad Bhabie go from a white teenager to a grown Black woman?"

Another added: "Bhad Bhabie is like the 6th person I've seen that was black fishing in the past 2 weeks. Are y'all ok..."

Bregoli has since responded to the backlash in her usual controversial fashion, with the young rapper reposting a photo that joked her "transformation into a lightskinned black woman is almost complete," simply adding, "Aww I'm trending, thank you".



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What is 'Blackfishing'?

Blackfishing -- derived from the term "catfishing" --  is used to describe someone (usually a white woman), who actively attempts to "to appear of African or Arab ancestry," or racially ambiguous, according to The Tab.

“Some people even consider it the modern equivalent of blackface or brownface, because it capitalises off the ‘exotic’ looks of historically oppressed minorities,” they added.

Purposely taking on black features as a white woman is generally frowned upon in the black community, as these stars will often profit of their look despite not having undergone the struggles of that race.

Dr. Aria Halliday, an assistant professor of Africana feminisms at the University of New Hampshire, concurred that “blackfishing” is essentially today's version of blackface.

“A lot of these Instagram models are getting followers. They’re getting paid to do certain makeup things and they’re definitely using their privilege to create a capitalist endeavour,” Halliday said.

“They don’t have to deal with the everyday existences of what it means to be a black woman, for example, but they are then parading themselves on social media as such.”

Who else has been accused of blackfishing?

Blackfishing has become a problematic trend, not only among celebrities, but also Instagram influencers who are often seen sporting darker skin, fuller lips, bigger thighs and bums, as well as braids and cornrows.

Swedish Instagram star Emma Hallberg, 20, has often been called out for transforming herself into a "blackfish" by mimicking black features, such as deeply tanned skin and curly hair.

Among the celebs to be blasted for blackfishing include Ariana Grande, who many have accused of darkening her skin in music videos throughout her career.



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The Kardashians are also seemingly called out every other week for culturally appropriating black culture, whether it's by darkening their skin in photo shoots, going under the knife for a more curvy physique, or donning  cornrows.

Image: Getty/Instagram