These Planned New Emoji Were Designed to Empower Women

Image: Unicode Consortium
Image: Unicode Consortium

A team from Google has proposed a new set of emoji to represent occupations. But for a change they depict women as well as men—an idea that the team thinks will better reflect, you know, real life.


The suggested emoji—there are 13 of them in total—depict occupations in sectors from construction and farming to science and education. Actually, they’re not standalone emoji, reports Buzzfeed: Instead, they’re constructed by combing existing icons, allowing them to create men or women working in a given profession. So woman + microscope = female scientist, while man + fried egg = male chef. Like this:

Illustration for article titled These Planned New Emoji Were Designed to Empower Women

The team has formally submitted the emoji to the Unicode Consortium, explaining in the proposal that they represent “a wide range of professions for women and men with a goal of highlighting the diversity of women’s careers and empowering girls everywhere.” In fact, the team cites a New York Times op-ed about the lack of female emoji as a source of inspiration. You can read the proposal document here.

Despite being rather silly, emoji proposals follow a fairly formal approval procedure. But this set will probably be waved through with relative ease, because one of the team members—Mark Davis—is actually the president of the Unicode Consortium. Convenient.

[Unicode via Buzzfeed]


Contributing Editor at Gizmodo. An ex-engineer writing about science and technology.


Where is the hijab and burka one?