Anti-LGBT Emoji “Glitch” Stirs Controversy

By: Edsel Ortiz
OwlFeed Journalist

Around February 18th, 2019, a Twitter user, @mioog, tweeted about a “new emoji” that he claims to have discovered. The “new emoji” is basically the LGBTQ+ flag with a strikethrough circle that means ‘no’ over it. The emoji is only visible through mobile and not on desktop.

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This emoji has been discovered for a month before the Twitter user claimed to had discovered it, but didn’t say anything, due to the fear of how it might be used. “I’ve been embracing it, but it’s also dangerous for people to use it hatefully,” said Mitchell, the Twitter user who discovered the emoji, on Pink News.

What the real emoji is, is just a glitch in the system. It can be done with any other emoji. Using Unicode characters, it is possible to grab an emoji and put a strikethrough circle overlaying the emoji. “It shouldn’t be possible,” said Mitchell to Out.

When Herb Scribner from Deseret News stated a quote from Fast Company, it said, ”This new Apple emoji does not exist. It’s simply a glitch in the system when using Unicode characters.”

The LGBTQ+  community already has hard times trying to gain support, and this new emoji doesn’t help. “…Would be not only harmful…but harmful for a community that’s already been struggling to gain support and awareness,” said Kianna Znika, a staff writer at Talon Marks.

This being introduced to the internet of today has gotten some results. People are using this emoji as a way of sarcasm and jokes. Some people love the new emoji, without using it in a hurtful way. “I just think it’s a meme itself, I don’t support it, I just think it’s funny,” said Sean Pompa, freshman at Desert Edge High School.

Even though most people use it in a humorous way, many people believe it’s wrong. “It’s stupid…this emoji is wrong in many ways,” says Alicia Marrufo, freshman at Agua Fria High School.

Many people have a more friendly way of using the emoji, but with one side comes another to counterclaim it. “This new emoji is the anti-pride emoji. Sickening,” said a twitter user, according to Pink News.

John Sierra, freshman at Agua Fria High School, shares his thoughts on the emoji, and he stated, “Unless being harassed with that emoji, it should not be taken as a threat or the wrong way.”

This “new emoji” has definitely stirred some things up in social media. What do you think will happen as time passes? Will it become an official emoji? Or will it be completely taken down?