Emoji – those little pictographs that have started to replace human emotion in writing – have become immensely popular, especially among the younger demographic.
But could emoji tip the balance in the debate over gender inequality? Four Google employees think they can make a difference with a new set of emojis that will give women a more representative image in terms of professions.
Gender inequality has seen a harsh blowback from feminists and their supporters everywhere, but more can be done. These Google employees believe that emoji could be good promoters of gender equality at the workplace.
They proposed 13 new emoji designs, including a cartoon female clerk, graduate, chemist, doctor, nurse, dentist, radiologist, farmer, teacher, tax preparer, mechanic, plumber, software engineer, accountant, chef, cook, and even a rock star!
So the team didn’t just take the existing male emoji and apply them to women; instead, they let their imagination do the work and came up with completely new emoji to express a more varied range of professions.
On May 10, the team presented its proposed designs at the Silicon Valley-based Unicode Consortium, which is basically the organization responsible with green-lighting new emojis. The group also parents a subcommittee that supervises the development of novel emojis.
“Our proposal is to create a new set of emoji that represents a wide range of professions for women and men with a goal of highlighting the diversity of women’s careers and empowering girls everywhere,” said the team.
Seeing that young girls are the heaviest emoji users, making these emoji available will “empower young women” and encourage them to think more of the important roles women play in the world.
The new additions only underscore the fact that more and more women are becoming prominent figures in all spheres and professions. It also suggests that emoji could evolve with the changing times, so they become more reflective of reality.
The creators also came with a surprising twist: even though the proposal of the emojis was meant to improve women’s representation, each of the suggested emojis was also given a related male counterpart.
In their presentation, the Google team revealed that their inspiration came from Emoji Feminisim op-ed by Amy Butcher. Fingers crossed that the emoji make their way into our smartphones by the end of the year.
Image Source: Mirror.co.uk