Today is World Emoji Day, a thing I never knew existed until two years ago when Ford publicized that it was trying to get a pickup truck added to the official set. Truth be told, I forgot all about World Emoji Day almost immediately, but I was reminded again this week when I saw the list of potential new additions being considered by the Unicode Consortium for inclusion into Unicode 14.
Some of these potential emoji would be useful for talking about the climate emergency—I’m thinking of the melting face and also the coral here. I’m sure we can all use a troll in our lives, too, while the saluting face will replace the trusty o7. And the low battery is bound to be popular. There are some new hands, gesturing, pointing, shaking, and even making love hearts to boot.
A couple of additions might upset some reactionaries on the Internet, however. Specifically, the pregnant man and his gender neutral equivalent, the pregnant person, have been proposed as inclusive additions since pregnancy is possible for some transgender and non-binary people. The world may also soon receive a gender neutral person with a crown option to go with the emoji man and woman wearing crowns.
The addition of some new emoji means the removal of others. For Unicode 14, that’s most likely going to mean losing the vulture (how will we discuss private equity?), the crow, the raised little finger (no more high tea?), the orchid, the cooking pot, the submarine, and the chainsaw.
Unicode is scheduled to approve the final list of Unicode 14 characters in September of this year, which means we can probably expect the new emoji to show up on our devices some time in the first half of 2022.
Listing image by Emojipedia