- Riots break out after a fake email about coronavirus went viral Thursday 8:59 PM
- Bloomberg edits debate clip to make other Democratic candidates appear speechless Thursday 7:50 PM
- Dad claims YouTube refuses to remove video of daughter’s murder Thursday 6:36 PM
- Video of Kanye leaving Kim in elevator to carry all their bags has people cackling Thursday 6:19 PM
- Orlando Bloom’s tattoo misspelled son’s name because of Pinterest Thursday 5:35 PM
- The Ahi Challenge is the latest dance taking over TikTok Thursday 4:40 PM
- Show criticized for putting rape victim in blackface to protect her identity Thursday 3:42 PM
- Woman becomes viral sensation after iconic ‘Shallow’ subway video Thursday 2:48 PM
- Prettyboyfredo tried to gift a bullied teen some $30,000 Nikes at school—he got detained Thursday 2:13 PM
- ‘Vanderpump Rules’ recap: Wedding bells and blows Thursday 1:50 PM
- A 16-year-old made a ‘meme guide’ to help her dad understand online trends Thursday 1:46 PM
- UCLA drops plans to use facial recognition after student pushback Thursday 1:07 PM
- ‘Star Trek: Picard’ recap, episode 5: ‘Stardust City Rag’ Thursday 12:56 PM
- Roger Stone sentenced to 40 months in prison Thursday 12:45 PM
- New The 1975 music video is full of memes you’ll love Thursday 12:28 PM
Apple promises to make emoji more ethnically diverse
There are very few emoji that represent non-Caucasians. This may change.
Emoji are so versatile, someone even rewrote Moby Dick using only the colorful Japanese smileys. Someone else made an excellent (and less borderline-NSFW) music video to Beyoncé’s “Drunk in Love.” And most people use them as a substitute for typing actual words while texting.
But emoji aren’t perfect. In fact, many people think emoji are racist because of the conspicuous lack of non-white icons (especially odd considering they come from an Asian company). Last year, people even created a petition to Apple asking for more emoji of color for the next software update.
That didn’t happen, although Apple did spur some increased diversity by including same sex-couple emoji. But an Apple employee told MTV that the company is aware of the problem and wants to change it.
“We agree with you. Our emoji characters are based on the Unicode standard, which is necessary for them to be displayed properly across many platforms. There needs to be more diversity in the emoji character set, and we have been working closely with the Unicode Consortium in an effort to update the standard,” Katie Cotton, the vice president of worldwide corporate communications for Apple, wrote MTV.
It’s sad it’s taken Apple so long to figure this out. Even Miley Cyrus realized that the lack of emoji diversity was bogus… way back in 2012.
RT if you think there needs to be an #emojiethnicityupdate
— Miley Ray Cyrus (@MileyCyrus) December 19, 2012
This isn’t the first time people have called for additional emoji. There’s currently a push for a hot dog emoji. But here’s hoping Apple focuses on pushing the Unicode Consortium to make ethnically diversifying emoji first.
Kate Knibbs is a notable tech reporter and pop culture essayist. A former staff writer for the Daily Dot, her work has appeared in Gizmodo, the Ringer, AV Club, Digital Trends, Popular Mechanics, and Time.