The pandemic even affects emoji. The Unicode consortium, the group behind the emoji versions, announced today that it is delaying its version scheduled for 2021, which means that the devices will not receive new emoji next year and that they will instead receive a release in 2022. The good news is that the emoji that have been announced earlier this year, like olive, beaver and diver, will still be available this fall. Unicode says the delay occurs because it depends on volunteers who are currently overwhelmed in the face of the pandemic.
“Under the current circumstances, we heard that our contributors have a lot to do at the moment and decided that it was in the best interests of our volunteers and standard-dependent organizations to extend our release date,” said said Mark. Davis, president of the consortium, in the group’s blog. “This year, we simply cannot commit to the same schedule that we have followed in the past.”
This means that the deadline for submitting new emoji has also been extended. People can submit their ideas from June 15 to September 1. Again, however, these will not appear on devices until 2022. The group says it is trying to determine whether it could release emoji sooner than if they are “sequenced” or emoji created at from a combination of two emoji, which does not require the encoding of new characters. While it is sad to hear that we are going to skip a year of new emoji, I am at least happy to hear that we will have more new ones this year – a treat for a difficult time.