Stock photography company Shutterstock finally pulled a set of blatantly antisemitic photos from its site on Wednesday afternoon, days after it received the first complaint.
On Wednesday, Siobhan Aalders, the vice president of global communications for the company, confirmed to The Jerusalem Post that “all the images in this set have been removed from our site.” At least eight of the photos in question were still available on the site Wednesday morning – despite the first complaint being lodged on Friday.
The images available for sale were taken by photographer Viacheslav Krylov, and feature a man in a white yarmulke in various poses near a table full of money. As of Wednesday morning, at least eight versions of the images remained for sale on the Shutterstock website, which offers stock photos for companies and news sites around the world. The captions on the images included “portrait of a happy man in a Jewish cap and waistcoat sits at a table with lots of money and shows thumb” and “a man accountant of Jewish nationalism sitting in the office attentively considers monetary hundred-dollar bills.”
The images first gained attention when Twitter user Dennis Wilen pointed them out on Friday. At the time, Shutterstock’s Twitter account told Wilen that the photo “is currently under review. Our compliance team is looking into whether this image violates our terms of service or not. That said, our terms of service specifically prohibit using content in any way that’s derogatory to any person or group.”
However, on Tuesday, the images all still remained online, and many other Twitter users began to pick up on the presence of the disturbing photos. Late Tuesday evening, Shutterstock founder and CEO Jon Oringer responded to posts, writing: “Thanks for the heads up – and sorry for the delay – we are removing now.” Within an hour of Oringer’s tweet, the original image that Wilen linked to had been removed. But eight other photos that are almost identical remained on the site.
A Shutterstock representative told the Post on Wednesday morning to “rest assured that we are working on this and some of these images have already been removed.” As of Wednesday afternoon, all of the images in question appeared to have been pulled from the Shutterstock site.