The group has been scheduled to roll on March 30, but Respawn declared today that it’s been put on hold, as Chinatown Market itself is changing its title.
Chinatown Market announced the rebranding earlier this afternoon, saying that”the Asian American community is rightfully demanding all people think and act honestly.”
“Our name has been inspired by the shops, people, and vibrance of Canal Street and Chinatown in New York but it’s not our name to use,” the business tweeted. “We didn’t do enough to contemplate exactly what this title would imply to communities in Chinatowns across the world and we need to take possession of this mistake. It is time to do the right thing and we’re dedicated to be part of the change.”
The new name will be announced”in the coming months,” and in the meantime which proceeds from present Chinatown Market-branded products will be contributed to non-profit organizations that encourage the AAPI [Asian American Pacific Islander] community.
It’s reasonable to guess the name change announcement came as a surprise to Respawn and EA, as Lifeline’s Mic Assess skin was revealed only yesterday. But only a couple hours following Chinatown Market’s announcement, Respawn tweeted support of it.
“In support of our friends @ChinatownMarket’s decision to rebrand, we’re holding the launch of in-game CTM-branded skins in @playapex tomorrow,” it wrote. “The skins will return with a new look after the rebrand.”
The Chinatown Market title change comes amidst a sharp growth in anti-Asian hate crimes and violence in america and across the world. A current NBC report cited analysis by the middle for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino saying that while hate crimes in 16 major US cities really decreased by seven percent total in 2020, those targeting Asian people rose by nearly 150 percent. A lot of the blame for this sudden spike is credited to the rhetoric of former US President Donald Trump, who repeatedly used phrases like”China virus” and”kung-flu” to explain precisely the Covid-19 pandemic while in office.