Unicode Approves Eleven Of Google’s Gender Equality Emoji

Whether good or bad, emoji have now become a language in their own right. While icon in nature, they do have the ability to convey greater meaning than what they immediately depict. In fact this has led to a number or more wide-ranging debates on the nature of emoji, whether they should be available in a variety of colors among other debatable points, including gender. While emoji may have started out as gender-neutral, as the technology has evolved so have emoji and in a bid to increase their personification, emoji have taken on more of a human appearance, albeit one which is far more often male.

This is however, something Google has been looking to address this year and back in May the tech giant proposed thirteen new emoji to increase the number of female-related emoji available. Ones which not only depict women in general, but women in the workplace including job roles such as teachers, doctors, nurses, technology workers, musicians, farmers, construction workers, and so on. It is this latter aspect that Google was looking to specifically address as while emoji for women are available, they were more stereotypical in nature. As Google puts it in a new blog post, existing options for women included a princess, a bride and having a haircut. While Google notes the male typical emoji included more job-oriented icons like detectives, police, medics and so on.

Now it seems as though the majority of those proposed emoji have been approved by Unicode Consortium, a committee set up and responsible for creating an industry standard for expressed text. Of the thirteen that were originally proposed, eleven have been approved with the two outliers seeming to be a dentist and a line worker. In fact, the Google blog on the matter notes that all of the proposed emoji have been approved in both male and female form and in a number of skin tones, which Google notes equates to more than 100 new emoji. Even better for fans of emoji, as well as the newly approved emoji, the blog post notes that Unicode is adding a further 33 existing emoji in both male and female form. So for instance, as well as the female getting a haircut, there will also now be a male getting a haircut emoji as well.

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About the Author

John Anon

John has been writing about and reviewing tech products since 2014 after making the transition from writing about and reviewing airlines. With a background in Psychology, John has a particular interest in the science and future of the industry. Besides adopting the Managing Editor role at AH John also covers much of the news surrounding audio and visual tech, including cord-cutting, the state of Pay-TV, and Android TV. Contact him at [email protected]
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