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FaceApp: the app that changes your gender

FaceApp, the app that modifies your appearance from "man" to "woman" and from "woman" to "man" opens two debates: does the application respect your privacy? Is it the concept of gender change in the transphobic app?
FaceApp: the app that "changes your gender"

"Change your gender." Between quotation marks. Especially in a month in which LGBTI pride is celebrated, we could not ignore the debate on transphobia that opens this application that is causing a furor. 

Surely all of you have seen lately on Instagram and other social networks super realistic photos in which men and women see their appearance transformed to seem "of the other gender". 

Even I myself have played to modify my appearance with this application to know how it would be if it had had a normatively masculine body. 

However, there are a couple of dangerous details that the popularity of this app reveals: on the one hand the problem of privacy and on the other the internalized transphobia that emanates from the concept. 

Your privacy and FaceApp

I'll start by talking about technical danger. Although initially, it seems like any other app, FaceApp hides several dangers against your privacy. If you take a look at its terms and conditions, we find the following: 

"Collect all user-generated content including photos or videos recorded with your smartphone camera, as other behavioral information, through third-party analysis tools, cookies, and identifiers of your device to provide personalized content and advertising".

That is, in addition to storing and collecting information about your operating system, the mobile or device you use, your social networks (in case you are logged in from Facebook), your online shopping habits, the app keeps the photos that you use to “change gender”. 

Many and many of us have resigned ourselves to this new era in which any app or device seems to spy on everything we do. Is it fighting against something inevitable? 

So for this reason, despite knowing the dangers that your privacy runs when you use FaceApp, we continue to use it. Don't they already know everything about us?

Still, it is important to know what you are giving in exchange for being able to play for free with this app. I am also sure that many people will decide not to use the app when they know that it saves everything their camera photographs through the app. 

FaceApp: a transphobic app?

Now, despite the fact that FaceApp does not seem to be a very reliable application in terms of respecting your privacy, the topic of “gender change” opens another interesting debate: is it the transphobic application?

Twitter burns lately with comments "for" and "against" the trans community (as if you could be against or for something that exists and now). 

Famous writers openly show their transphobia. An alleged "feminist" trend emerges speaking of "men disguised as women" to refer to trans women. 

And then FaceApp goes viral and transmits that if you have makeup and long hair you are a woman and if you have a beard you are a man. 

It explains to us in an overly simplistic way that gender is binary: man and woman. There's no more. A female body and a male body. 


The app, surely unconsciously (and not for that reason with less guilt), is making a group that needs the opposite invisible. FaceApp forgets that there are trans women, with or without beards, and trans men, with features considered normatively feminine. Leave aside a whole group of people who do not identify with either gender or those who identify with both. 

Gender is a complex, fluid, and diverse concept, and FaceApp with its “gender change” game forgets that this diversity exists. 

We can play at being normative and “change our gender”, but we must not forget about trans people and the whole range of different genres that exist. 

Other FaceApp Features

Beyond the controversial “gender change”. The application offers more tools that can be fun. At the bottom, you will see makeup options, age (you can get younger or older). 

You can also change your hairstyle, change the size of your nose, or try different glasses. Please note that not all FaceApp tools and features are free. 

In fact, something that we liked a lot about the application is the selection of filters available, all of them will be able to give your photos a much more “instagramer” image. 

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