Ancestry.com has apologised after an advert accused of "romanticising slavery" caused outrage on social media.
On Thursday, Twitter flew into a rage after the company dropped an advert that depicted a white man proposing to a black woman in what appears to be during the American Civil War time period. The man is seen holding a ring as he tries to convince her to escape to "the North" with him.
In the commercial entitled "Inseparable", the man tells her:
Abigail. There's a place we can be together, across the border. Will you leave with me?
The advert ends without a clear answer, but the postscript appears to be a mock-up of a marriage license for Abigail Williams and James Miller, dated 9 April 1857.
It is not clear if the woman is a slave or a free woman of colour, but it seems likely the couple is having a forbidden affair for the time period.
Naturally, it didn't take long for Twitter to call the company out for its tone-deaf ad.
Many said that romanticising this part of history was "deeply ignorant of the history of rape and emotional distress that many black women who survived slave plantations faced".
Others also looked into the details, noting how Abigail doesn't even get to speak, while her white partner is seemingly making decisions for her.
In a statement to the HuffingtonPost, the genealogy company said,
This ad was intended to represent one of those stories. We very much appreciate the feedback we have received and apologise for any offense that the ad may have caused.
They have since pulled the controversial advert.
HT The Mary Sue