By Kristen Bateman. Photos: AFP/Getty Images, Courtesy of The Unicode Consortium.
It looks like more diversity is finally coming to an iPhone keyboard near you. In the spirit of inclusivity, the Unicode Consortium announced it will be releasing 56 new emojis in 2017. While there will be a pie and pretzel emoticon we’ve all been waiting for, the secretive Silicon Valley group will also be releasing some emojis that make major progress toward diversity.
The latest update will introduce a bearded man, “a nude person in a steamy room,” a breast-feeding mother, and a woman wearing a hijab. Rayouf Alhumedhi, 15, from Saudi Arabia submitted a proposal earlier this year to request that a hijab emoji be added to the keyboard, according to the Wall Street Journal. “Roughly 550 million Muslim women on this earth pride themselves on wearing the hijab. With this enormous number of people, not a single space on the keyboard is reserved for them,” she wrote in the proposal, which gained the support of many, including the cofounders of Reddit. In April this year, the current emoji system added an update that allowed users to cycle through different skin colors to include more diverse options.
Some of the other proposals, which seemed to be successful and have been added to the new set of keyboards for 2017, include a human throwing up and a vampire. The new set will also include broccoli, socks, an exploding head, a brain, and a flying saucer.
Emojis have become such a big part of our culture that they’ve been popping up everywhere, even on the runways at Chanel and on shoes from Charlotte Olympia. Kim Kardashian and Versace have released their own emojis, and the Museum of Modern Art recently purchased the original set to add to their permanent collection.
In today’s world, there's no denying that emojis have almost become a second language to us. But if you're dying to try out one of these animated characters soon, you'll have to wait until they're approved first. Technology companies such Apple and Google ultimately decide which emojis to include and what they will look like, so there's no guarantee that the hijab emoji will show up with your next update.
This story originally appeared on Glamour.
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