Carrots are tops: Gingers win emoji battle
Redheads get represented with 12 of their kind added to the emoji collection
Gingers around the world have rejoiced as it was confirmed that 12 new redhead emojis will be arriving on smartphones, following a year-long campaign.
The Unicode Consortium, a body of technology companies that decides standards on the popular cartoon faces, said the ginger emojis would feature among 157 additions to smartphones later this year.
Almost 22,000 people signed the petition titled “Redheads should have emoji too” on change.org, fronted by Ginger Parrot, a website “for redheads and ginger lovers”. The list was hand-delivered to the Apple HQ in California, saved in a carrot-shaped USB.
“It’s been a slow process since 2015, but I can say that gingerkind is probably just as relieved as I am that we've reached this positive result,” said Ginger Parrot editor Emma Kelly.
“Every other natural hair colour was represented while red hair was completely ignored. It didn't give a positive message at all, leaving us out.“We may only be a small percentage of the world at less than 2%, but that doesn't mean we don’t matter. Having redhead emojis on iPhones will mean that we can all feel included, which is what the intention of the diversified emojis should have been,” she added.
The redhead emojis will join 145 new additions to the ever-growing list of icons smartphone users can select to express themselves, updated regularly to reflect demand.“Collectively, redheads were one of the most requested emoji additions from Emojipedia users in the past two years,” said Jeremy Burge, the founder of Emojipedia and World Emoji Day.
“Part of my proposal to solve this issue looked at the issue of different hair colours or styles not currently accounted for and this ended up including redheads, curly hair, white hair and baldness,” he added.
Mangoes are also making an appearance following a campaign by the Australian mango industry. Farming body Hort Innovation funded a social media campaign under the hashtag #mangoemojiplease.
“I was very confident we would have a groundswell of fans begging for one across Australia, and potentially across the world, with our Asian and US export plans as well,” said Elisa King, Hort Innovation marketing chief.
Superheroes, a softball, skateboard, lobster and bagel have also been included in Unicode's Emoji 11.0 update.
Unicode is the body that sets a framework for smartphone developers at Apple or Google to work to.
The list is final, but it takes some time for them to appear. Typically, Apple customers have received the new emojis ahead of Android users.
Last year Apple added a person wearing a headscarf, someone with a beard, a woman breastfeeding and gender-neutral emoji faces following pressure from campaigners.