You may have read by now that many new Emoji are on the way in Emoji 4.0, the latest update for those tiny little characters found in text messages, on Facebook, Twitter, and dozens of other devices.
(Graphic courtesy of Emojipedia)
What you may not know is the Emoji are governed by a consortium. The Unicode Consortium.
The Unicode Consortium, a non-profit organization, was created in 1991 to “provide a single, consistent way to represent each letter and symbol needed for all human languages across all computers and devices”.
In 2007, the Consortium took on the task of setting standards for the use of Emoji across various devices. Since that time, the group has been instrumental in working with manufacturers and software vendors to create the Emoji system we have today.
It is important to note that the Unicode Consortium only provides coding standards. The colors and final design are up to each vendor, which is why Emoji may appear differently on various devices.
Membership in the Unicode Consortium is open (for a fee) to organizations, businesses, and individuals. For more information, visit their website.
The 40th Unicode conference is set for November, 2016.