How An Adobe Employee Made Every Device In The World More Queer (With Just Emojis)

One Adobe employee, with an expertise in fonts, is behind the victory of making perhaps the most universal language in the world–emojis–more gender-inclusive.

Paul D. Hunt is the designer and creator behind the latest gender-inclusive emojis, that are now on nearly every device all over the world.

They are part of the newest set of emojis ‘Unicode 13’ a set of standards released earlier this year by the Unicode Consortium, an organization that sets rules for tech companies using special characters like emoji. 

Hunt is a typeface designer and font developer at Adobe. Still, motivated by personal reasons to make all emoji, more gender-inclusive, they submitted plans to the Unicode Consortium.

“I decided to champion the case for gender-inclusive emoji because, as a queer person, I wanted to provide greater visibility for my fellow gender-nonconforming and non-binary people,” Hunt tells me. “I wanted them to have better options for representing their identity and appearance within the emoji system.”

And the the gender-neutral emoji set, is being rolled out alongside another major gender emoji victory. After multiple representations to the Unicode Consortium over several years, the Transgender flag was also introduced this year.

“As people begin to see a little pink, white and blue flag in friends’ and families’ texts and social media bios, I hope that more and more people will begin to know and acknowledge that some of their loved ones are also transgender”

The global non-profit body has great power and decides international standards for the use of characters. That also means, once a year, they decide what new emojis should become universally published and available on all devices. In one grand