💬 The Wrap
Hello from ☕️ Philz in Cupertino where I'm currently on my laptop ahead of this week's Unicode Technical Committee meeting. So what's happening this week?
On the agenda this week, amongst many other non-emoji topics, is an update to the emoji documentation which proposes dramatically expanding what can be an emoji. At present, most new emojis require a large process to gain a name and code point as part of acceptance into the Unicode Standard.
What these QID Emoji Tag Sequences propose is a method of using the ID of a Wikipedia entry to define a new emoji. This would theoretically permit different platforms to support different emojis, but with the benefit that no two platforms would implement the same emoji with different code points (as both would have the same Wikipedia QID, with an example listed as dog breeds).
This could speed up implementation, and also avoids literally every object in the world requiring a unique code point over time. It also allows some platforms a way to implant huge swathes of new emojis which might not be of interest to other systems.
Also being looked at is a proposal for Person Feeding Baby which expands on efforts to create gender neutral options for most emojis. In this instance, rather than new gender options for the breastfeeding emoji, a new bottle-feeding option for a gender-ambiguous person, woman and man is proposed.
I continue to field questions about when new emojis are coming to iOS. Apple is on the record as saying these are coming in "Fall 2019" which I read as October or November. With a slightly disjointed iOS release schedule this year (iOS 13.1 came only one week after iOS 13.0), it seems possible we'll see these in iOS 13.2, or even iOS 13.3.
Oh and if you're in Hong Kong...you'll notice you now have one less emoji on the emoji keyboard. The flag for 🇹🇼 Taiwan has been removed for all iOS devices bought in Hong Kong, and for international iPhones with the region set to Hong Kong. This change is less restrictive than the existing ban in China, as the emoji can still be copied-and-pasted, but it's still notable - especially with the ongoing pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong - as previously Hong Kong was mostly free of these sorts of restrictions on iOS
It's been a few months since the last Emoji Wrap newsletter. If you're interested in what makes emoji tick, then you've come to the right place. No podcast this month, but we'll be returning with alongside a future newsletter.
For those who are new to the newsletter, a brief intro on me: I'm Jeremy Burge, founder and Chief Emoji Officer (basically the Editor in Chief) of Emojipedia. As Emojipedia is a voting member of the Unicode Consortium and I represent it at UTC meetings where new emojis and other emoji details are decided.
If you want to hear more from me personally, feel free to follow me on Twitter, or join some of my posts as I check out the UK by boat. For emoji only news - I'd recommend the Emojipedia Twitter account as the more suitable place.