Re: Emoji: Public Review December 2008: e-1DE CHINESE ZODIAC DRAGON

From: Michael Everson (
Date: Wed Mar 11 2009 - 09:44:07 CST

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    On 11 Mar 2009, at 15:35, Peter Constable wrote:

    >> That doesn't mean a RABBIT isn't a RABBIT. What possible benefit
    >> could
    >> there be to distinguish RABBIT from ZODIAC RABBIT?
    > What possible benefit could there be to specifying _this_ RABBIT as
    > being a ZODIAC RABBIT (an intrinsically narrower intension)?

    Do you really believe this? Do you believe that SHAMROCK would be

    >> It's a RABBIT, Ken.
    > Erm... I think you are in agreement on that point, which is where
    > this thread started: the name in the proposal is RABBIT, not ZODIAC
    > RABBIT.

    I did not and do not propose to name it ZODIAC RABBIT. I do propose
    that these

    >> Then what is wrong with
    >> RABBIT
    >> * used in Chinese astrology
    > No problem with the name. The problem with the annotation is that it
    > suggests a primary intended usage that is somewhat narrow.

    Nothing of the kind! Where did you get "primary intended usage" from
    an annotation. That is one of many possible usages.

    > A far less biased annotation would be "used as Japanese emoji",
    > which leaves people free to infer use to denote a zodiacal sign or
    > whatever other possible semantics might be used in that context.

    Good gods, Peter. Why are you making this worse? "Far less biased"? I
    don't object to the RABBIT being used in Japanese emoji. Nor do I
    object to an annotation stating such. What "bias" is there in
    recognizing that the 12 zodiac animals are in this set? (Actually more
    than 12 are there.)

    What I am coming up against is, apparently, a very narrow view about
    the nature of symbols which does not bode well for progress here.

    >> Why not annotate the FIRE ENGINE as
    >> * fire station
    >> then?
    > What's the benefit to restricting it in that way?

    Restriction? To me that just means "can also be used to indicate fire
    station as well as (obviously) fire engine".

    Michael Everson *

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