1. Soon, you'll be able to give your friends the Vulcan salute (or flip the bird, if you prefer) using nothing but a single character in a text message.

    According to the Unicode Consortium -- an industry regulator that standardizes the colourful emoji sets found on iPhone and Android keyboards -- approximately 250 brand new "pictographic symbols" are set to be introduced to the world.
  2. While Unicode provided only a brief glimpse of the new emoji characters on its blog, derived mainly from "characters in long-standing and widespread use in Wingdings and Webdings fonts," Emojipedia has obtained a list of new characters consumers can expect.

    Among them are such symbols as "Hot Pepper," "Derelict House Building," "Om Symbol," "No Piracy," "Sleuth Or Spy" "Black Skull And Crossbones" and, for some reason, "Man In Business Suit Levitating."

    As many around the web have noted, the list also includes a new character called "Reversed Hand With Middle Finger Extended" -- otherwise known as the middle finger.
  3. According to the Verge, it will be up to Unicode member platforms like iOS and Android to implement the new standard and develop the way specific emojis look based on Unicode's list.

    While many are pleased to hear that new characters are coming, others are frustrated that the Unicode Consortium has yet to fix what many have been calling a diversity problem in recent years.
  4. In March, Apple publicly responded to the growing number of consumers who have fighting for a more racially diverse set of emojis.

    "Our emoji characters are based on the Unicode standard, which is necessary for them to be displayed properly across many platforms," wrote Apple's vice-president of worldwide corporate communications, Katie Cotton, in response to an email from MTV ACT. "There needs to be more diversity in the emoji character set, and we have been working closely with the Unicode Consortium in an effort to update the standard.鈥  
  5. The fact that few of the newly-announced characters actually include people -- and no people of colour in particular -- has been criticized by many, though as the Washington Post notes, "just because Unicode didn鈥檛 forcibly introduce diversity into this new version doesn鈥檛 mean that Apple couldn鈥檛 make that change independently."
  6. Others, much like the woman who has actively been campaigning for a hot dog emoji in recent months, are suggesting their own, very specific emojis be included in the new set.
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