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Google’s new vegan-compliant salad emoji stirs up critics on social media

@jenniferdaniel/Twitter

Things… took a turn.

In a bid to be more inclusive, Google is stripping its salad emoji of extra calories and inviting vegans to give it a taste. Jennifer Daniel, a user experience manager for Google emoji, announced on Twitter on Wednesday that the company would remove the egg from its salad emoji.

“There’s big talk about inclusion and diversity at Google so if you need any evidence of Google is making this priority may I direct your attention to the [salad] emoji—we’ve removed the egg in Android P beta 2, making this a more inclusive vegan salad,” she said.

https://twitter.com/jenniferdaniel/status/1004427564679458816

While we’re all for being inclusive, there’s no denying the new salad emoji doesn’t exactly look appetizing. Google has updated its food emoji in the past after some questionable culinary decisions, so let’s hope it at least throws some avocado or cucumber on top. We’d be buying from the menu of Apple’s emoji restaurant if we had to choose.

Others were even more critical of the changes, hitting out at Google, and specifically Daniel, for making adjustments that don’t align with their own preferences.

https://twitter.com/DJD_Allday/status/1004477154673950722

Daniel backtracked from her original statement about why the changes were made, later claiming they were done to create an image more faithful to Unicode’s description: “A bowl of healthy salad, containing lettuce, tomato, and other salad items such as cucumber.” It did little to quell the criticism.

The eggless salad is one of 157 changes coming to emoji on Android devices later this year. The list includes two gender-neutral emoji, a water gun to replace the pistol, and a red-headed character. Google is also turning its grasshopper emoji into a cricket, giving the turtle a more playful look, and cooking the bacon icon to a deep, delicious brown color.

The changes will be made to Android P, the upcoming mobile operating system expected to arrive on handsets later this summer. Google released the first beta for it last month after announcing its major features at the I/O developer conference. It’s now ready to jump into phase two of testing.

In its developer blog, Google announced Android P Beta 2, an update that includes the OS’s final APIs, latest system images, and updated developer tools. The Android P Beta 2 is available on select devices and will be rolled out to everyone in July or August.

Phillip Tracy

Phillip Tracy

Phillip Tracy is a former technology staff writer at the Daily Dot. He's an expert on smartphones, social media trends, and gadgets. He previously reported on IoT and telecom for RCR Wireless News and contributed to NewBay Media magazine. He now writes for Laptop magazine.