We the People

Sick of Stereotypical Turban Guy, DoSomething.org Petitions Apple to Address Emoji Inequality

Miley must be so relieved.
(Photo: DoSomething.org)

(Photo: DoSomething.org)

Late last year, before Miley Cyrus became the platinum-haired twerking PSA that she is today, she started a shortlived Twitter campaign for emoji equality. “RT if you think there needs to be an #emojiethnicity update,” she tweeted, adding “umm before they add nail colors they BETTER add black people!!!” Now, a group of dissatisfied emoji users at DoSomething.org have launched a petition to address the emoji keyboard’s racial inequality.

The petition, addressed to Tim Cook, Jony Ive and other Apple execs, asks that the emoji keyboard included with iOS7 incorporate emojis representative of people of color:

“Of the more than 800 Emojis, the only two resembling people of color are a guy who looks vaguely Asian and another in a turban. There’s a white boy, girl, man, woman, elderly man, elderly woman, blonde boy, blonde girl and, we’re pretty sure, Princess Peach. But when it comes to faces outside of yellow smileys, there’s a staggering lack of minority representation.”

As the petition points out, there is literally an emoji of a smiling turd and no emojis with varying skin tones. To combat this injustice, DoSomething is seeking 10,000 people to sign the petition, which they promise to deliver to Apple themselves.

When iOS6 was released, the emoji keyboard included new same-sex couple emojis, so we’re pretty sure it’d be easy to update it to include people of color.

As long as we’re talking about missing emojis, maybe you can slip a penis emoji into the update? It’s getting tiresome to search for the eggplant.

Follow Jessica Roy on Twitter or via RSS. jroy@observer.com