AfroFuture Fest will no longer charge white people double prices for tickets following backlash
Afrofuture Youth, the organizers of the festival, said they had revised the prices over concern for the "safety of our community and family"
A group organizing a music festival has reversed its decision to charge white people twice as much as people of color following a severe backlash.
The AfroFuture Fest, which is scheduled to take place in Detroit on August 3 and is hosted by Afrofuture Youth, was originally advertising an "Early Bird" People of Color (POC) ticket for $10, with the same ticket for non-POC's priced at $20, according to CNN.
The group had defended the ticket structure by stating it had been "built to ensure [sic] that the most marginalized communities (people of color) are provided with an equitable chance at enjoying events in their own community (Black Detroit)."
They argued that white people had the privilege of attending festivals in POC populated cities such as Detroit, i.e., white people could afford tickets to events in any city while black and brown people could not.
"This cycle disproportionately displaces black and brown people from enjoying entertainment in their own communities," they said on Eventbrite, the ticketing platform where they were promoting the festival.
AfroFuture Fest hit headlines last week when rapper Tiny Jag, who had agreed to support the event by performing for free, said she would no longer be participating after she learned about how white people were being charged double the price.
"A non-POC friend of mine brought to my attention that AfroFuture is requiring non-people-of-color to pay twice the amount to attend the festival as POC," she tweeted. "This does not reflect the views of myself or the Tiny Jag team. I will not be playing this show. I apologize for anyone who may have been triggered or offended."
Eventbrite then threatened to unpublish the event as well, stating that they do not "permit events that require attendees to pay different prices based on their protected characteristics such as race or ethnicity."
On Monday morning, Afrofuture Youth announced they would be reversing their previous decision, but said it was for the "safety of our community and family" because they had "received threats from white supremacists."
They also said their hand was forced because black children and youth were being subjected to "racist" comments on social media.
The group announced they had rolled out a new ticketing formula that would charge $20 for general admission and a "suggested donation for nonPOC."
They explained the change on Eventbrite, writing, "Events often designed for marginalized Black and Brown communities can be easily co-opted by those with cultural, monetary, and class privileges."
They said they wanted to promote "equity over equality" and that non-POC individuals had been encouraged to provide additional donations as "acknowledgment of this historical inequity."