As of last week Apple made an announcement that would change one of its most polarizing and long standing divisive emoji’s. What the dropped on the crowd at a press conference last week was that they would change their gun emoji which depicted a Smith and Wesson style 6 shooter revolver pointing to the left with a green water pistol gun with a clearly visible safety tip that is orange on the end. This is causing an uproar from gun nuts. A kind of first its the emoji then they are coming for our real gun kind of attitude is being felt. The move is being made to reflect Apple’s gun stance because gun violence is a very hot topic right now and Apple knows their base. The comply last year ted a fight to get the unicode consortium, to reject the rifle emoji.
This is interesting when we consider private industry and their role in affecting the sociopolitical sphere. What I mean to say is that Apples thinking is that the emoji is a part of the parlance of our time and as a result it is a way we communicate and thus we are limited by the given symbols as a result of what people can and cannot see as a result of our behavior. Thus Apple plays a huge role in what people can and cannot say given their prescribed language. So to deliberately remove one emoji is in affect a way of limiting the language and dictating what can and cannot be said. Is this right ? I don’t know but what can be seen is that it is and will probably remain a very large part of the discussion for years to come in this country. Not to mention that to get rid of it does not really say that it is really doing anything other than what cannot already be done. That being said, it can also be seen that there several reasons why we can look at this and say they have autonomy over the topic. Consider also the point that it is driving home that it is something that we should not talk about is the message. But simply not talking about it is not going to do anything in the way of curbing social and political sigmas and behaviors surrounding this topic.
Some can see that this is just Apple trying to be politically correct, and who know maybe by taking this away from the vocabulary it would curb the reality or presence of it in our world today. Still it remains to be seen what or why anything is going to change their minds or if it would be apropriate to have it at all in the future. “It’s not surprising in this hypersensitive culture that we seem to have that something like an emoji would cause such concern.” said Jude. “its hard to hay if it’s worth discussing.” That being said, “I suspect the impact be slight.” he goes on to say and that seems to be the sentiments being felt by many these days.