You're About to Have More Options Than "White Emoji" and "Racist Emoji"

By Ashley Feinberg on at

Racial diversity amongst our emoji has been an issue for a while now, especially as more teens regress into a wordless lifestyle. Thankfully, it sounds like the Unicode Consortium has heard our cries: diverse emoji are coming. And not the racist kind.

While the new skin tones merely exist in the form of a proposed draft now, we have every reason to believe that they will indeed becoming to an emoji-capable device near you one day soon. After all, even Apple was putting pressure on Unicode to come up with a solution to the almost uniformly white faces we've had our disposal thus far. According to the draft:

Unicode Version 8.0 is adding 5 symbol modifier characters that provide for a range of skin tones for human emoji. These characters are based on the six tones of the Fitzpatrick scale, a recognised standard for dermatology (there are many examples of this scale online, such as FitzpatrickSkinType.pdf). The exact shades may vary between implementations.

And once this proposal goes through, even if you're on a device that doesn't display diverse colour images, you should be able to still see the intended skin tone through a greyscale gradation.

You're About to Have More Options Than "White Emoji" and "Racist Emoji"

You can see the whole plan over at Unicode here. [Unicode]