8 Emojis That Caused a Public Backlash
With technology improving daily and the potential to colonize Mars or cure diseases looking more promising, it’s surprising we still can’t cobble together a decent bagel emoji. Earlier this month, Apple took blowback from carb lovers for their rendering of the popular baked good as part of their iOS 12.1 beta 2 rollout. The bagel was too smoothly-rendered, critics charged, and lacked cream cheese.
Apple has since fixed the bagel for their beta 4 release, but it wasn’t the first time companies have been criticized for poorly-designed emojis. Here’s what else got the thumbs down from users.
The burger emoji battle is fun, but let's take a moment to point out that Microsoft is the only one that gets it completely right pic.twitter.com/csKiLwL3OK
— Rich Woods (@TheRichWoods) October 29, 2017
Everyone loves a good burger. Virtually no one enjoys a burger with the cheese located below the patty. This gastronomic offense was committed by Google during its Android Oreo 8.0 release in 2017 and fixed in 8.1.
Hmmmm, Google, this is not how beer works pic.twitter.com/rLsmThcLKM
— Thomas Fuchs 🕷 (@thomasfuchs) October 29, 2017
In that same 8.0 update, Google took a curious approach to a glass of beer, placing froth on top despite the glass only being half-full.
— Emojipedia 📙🎃 (@Emojipedia) January 27, 2016
Apple added this shallow pan food assortment to iOS 10.2 in 2016 and immediately drew fire for using unconventional ingredients like shrimp, peas, and something resembling slugs. The revised version replaced them with chicken, lima beans, and green beans.
— Kevin Miller (@KevinMillerPPH) February 20, 2018
The Unicode Consortium, the nonprofit that introduces emojis and lets tech companies arrive on final designs, got people boiling mad in early 2018 when their rendering of a lobster was missing a pair of legs and sported a misshapen tail. (Strangely, the logo for seafood dining establishment Red Lobster makes a similar mistake—their lobster has only eight legs instead of 10.)
There's big talk about inclusion and diversity at Google so if you need any evidence of Google is making this priority may I direct your attention to the 🥗 emoji— we've removed the egg in Android P beta 2, making this a more inclusive vegan salad. pic.twitter.com/kzHY0A9ZjG
— Jennifer 🧟♀️ (@jenniferdaniel) June 6, 2018
Salads are often populated with a hard-boiled egg for a little protein, so it’s understandable Google opted to include one in its salad emoji for Android P earlier this year. But vegans took issue with the egg, prompting Google to revise the bowl of greens so it contained just lettuce and tomatoes.
6. FEELING FAT
— Mashable (@mashable) March 10, 2015
Facebook didn’t get too many “Likes” from users in 2015, when it introduced an emoji that depicted a bulbous face to signal someone was “feeling fat.” Body-positive activists argued it could constitute body-shaming. The site switched the description to “feeling stuffed.”
— Jeremy Burge 🐥 (@jeremyburge) October 2, 2018
Skateboard enthusiasts were happy when Unicode introduced a four-wheeled emoji in 2018. They were not happy the board looked like a ‘'70s relic, with divided grip tape and an overly-curved body. Skateboard legend Tony Hawk helped Unicode refine the design into something more palatable to skaters.
8. PEACH BUTT
— The FADER (@thefader) November 16, 2016
Owing to the relative simplicity of their designs, emojis can often take on alternative meanings. The best example may be the peach, which in iOS resembles a plump little butt complete with a crack. Apple foolishly tried fixing this in 2016, rounding off the edges to look more like the fruit. Users complained, and Apple backed off. Emojipedia ran the data and discovered the emoji was most frequently used with Tweets containing the words “ass,” “badgirl,” and “booty.”