A Google employee has submitted a formal proposal for a rainbow LGBT pride flag emoji to the governing body that regulates graphics worldwide, the Unicode Consortium. Mark Davis, the proposal’s author, is also one of the co-founders of Unicode and the group’s current president.
Davis also says he’s found a way to “hack” the current system to make the flag available immediately instead of waiting until June 2017 and the next scheduled update to emojis worldwide. To skip all of the technical mumbo jumbo, it amounts to taking a plain white flag emoji and mixing it with the rainbow emoji to create – tada! – a rainbow flag.
“Because existing Unicode characters are used, vendors can begin design and implementation work now and can deploy before the end of 2016, rather than waiting for Unicode v10.0 to come out in June of 2017,” the proposal says. They even drew a neat diagram for you.
There was an attempt to add the pride flag emoji following the Supreme Court’s ruling in favor of marriage equality last year, but Unicode wasn’t quite ready.
“The flag is in the public domain, so it certainly isn’t being held up by copyright issues,” a proposal from 2015 reads. “And the current range of rainbow-related emoji show that the technology to jam all those colors distinctly into a very tiny space is available. Numerous national flags have been emojified. And given that the flag has recently been added to the Museum of Modern Art’s design collection, everyone is in agreement about its ongoing cultural significance. So what gives?”
So when will you be able to share the rainbow love with your fellow queers? No answer yet, but with a heavy hitter like Davis backing the proposal, you can bet it won’t be too much longer.