Love them or hate them, emojis are a big deal. The Emoji Movie, though reviled on Rotten Tomatoes with an 8 percent rating that coincides with a Metacritic rating of 12 percent, grossed over $200 million on a $50 production budget. People use them each and every day to impart their love, hate, joy, sadness, and silliness. The “Pile of Poo” emoji, being perhaps the favorite symbol for 7-year-olds and 70-year-olds alike, was portrayed in The Emoji Movie by the esteemed Sir Patrick Stewart.
Well, phone freaks and textaholics had best get ready for a whole boatload more. The Unicode Consortium, the body responsible for designing new emojis to add to the current roster, has announced that they will be rolling out update Emoji 11.0 in a matter of days, reports Business Insider. One-hundred and fifty-seven new smileys, symbols, icons, and expressions are said to be on the agenda, ranging from a wide-eyed pleading smiley to stands of DNA.
New animals featured in the upcoming Emoji 11.0 update include the hippo, mosquito, parrot, peacock, badger, raccoon, and swan. Foodies will find their tastes satiated by the main course consisting of leafy lettuce, pink frosted cupcakes, bagels, moon cake, and, of course, the catch-all emoji that is sure to be a hit with the trolls: salt.
The addition of these 157 emojis to the existing set makes for a total of 2,823 symbols available for people to use in casual conversation. The cute little icons are remarkably popular in both private and public conversation – emojitracker provides a near hypnotic real-time count of when specific emojis are utilized on Twitter – and Newswhip reports that the usage of emojis across social media is up exponentially year-over-year since 2015.
Language is fluid, and meaning is constructed in many different ways, even when in a largely textual space such as the internet. With an emerging global community sharing the same social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Reddit), emojis become the absolutely perfect way to punctuate, or in some cases, the sole means of communication in and of themselves.
Some readers may remember rebus puzzles or picture puzzles (a stick of butter + a buzzing fly = butterfly) being taught to them as children, and the intergenerational appeal of emojis is no different. Placed in sequence, without words, an entire sentiment can be conveyed simply by selecting the right emoji combinations. A heart, a couple holding hands, a wedding ring could mean lasting love or a wedding. A gust of wind and a rolling eyes smiley, could mean someone blowing up your inbox.
Users wanting to get really creative may do well to pop on over to emojiRequest to vote on or suggest new emojis. While the Unicode Constortium is aware of the site and does monitor the results, there is no guarantee that user submissions or votes will influence future releases for certain.