After Hours Episode 2 Discusses the Trans Flag Emoji, Trans Representation in Unicode

Updated: Oct 13, 2020

On Thursday, February 6, LGBT Tech released episode two of LGBT Tech: After Hours. The podcast, which debuted last week on Soundcloud, provides information about LGBTQ+ issues in tech from an LGBTQ+ perspective. This week, the LGBT Tech team discussed the Unicode Consortium's recent inclusion of the trans flag, trans symbol, and expanded gender options in its Emoji List, v13.0.

Emojis have come a long way since1997, when Japanese phone company SoftBack - then J-Phone - released the first known set emojis on the SkyWalker DP-211SW mobile phone. Two years later, Shigetaka Kurita - a Japanese artist working for Japan's mobile carrier DoCoMo - created an emoji set that would influence later designs. Shigetaka's emojis - 176 total - were12- by 12- pixel images that communicated basic information, like the weather and phases of the moon.