Re: Facepalm gesture/emoticon proposal

From: Doug Ewell (
Date: Mon Mar 28 2011 - 11:33:45 CST

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    Christopher Fynn <chris dot fynn at gmail dot com> wrote:

    >> My understanding is that new emoji added for mobile phone use in
    >> Japan or elsewhere in East Asia will be supported as embedded
    >> graphics, rather than encoded as plain text by a mobile phone
    >> carrier...
    > Unless of course the manufacturer of some new popular communications
    > device decides to encode some graphics as text characters ...

    The argument thus far has been that manufacturers of existing
    communications devices have agreed not to encode newly created graphics
    as text characters, in PUAs or anywhere else.

    One potential flaw in that argument, other than the possibility of a
    manufacturer of a new device (phone or otherwise) ignoring the agreement
    for competitive advantage ("our emoji transmit faster than theirs"), is
    that end users may no longer perceive the same "text vs. graphics"
    boundary that we do. Japanese cell phones already display emoji as
    animated, colored cartoons, which their users have been told are now
    Unicode characters. When the manufacturers inevitably invent new
    even if they implement them as graphics—will their users understand
    they *are* graphics, unlike the original emoji, or will they have the
    same expectation of being able to copy them as plain text, Google them,
    tweet them, and so forth?

    Judging by, the Unicode
    Consortium views the encoding of emoji as a genuine boon to end users.
    It's not really all that hard to imagine pressure from end users, in the
    form "these are just like those," leading to more emoji in Unicode.

    Doug Ewell | Thornton, Colorado, USA |
    RFC 5645, 4645, UTN #14 | ietf-languages @ is dot gd slash 2kf0s ­

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