Tailoring the Marketplace (is: Re: Unicode Emoji 5.0 characters now final)

William_J_G Overington wjgo_10009 at btinternet.com
Fri Mar 31 09:50:08 CDT 2017

Peter Constable wrote:

> The interest of consumers, in regard to emoji, will never be best met by Unicode-encoded emoji, no matter what process there is for determining what should be "recommended", because consumers inevitably want emoji they recommend for themselves, not what anybody else recommends.

The consumers can only choose from what is available to consumers. So what the Unicode Technical Committee recommends or "not-recommends" may well have a very significant effect upon the choices available to the consumer.

> If Sally wants an emoji to convey her thoughts on her grandson's school play, or on the latest tweet from a politician, or whatever, she wants it _now_, and she doesn't particularly care if you or I would recommend that emoji to her or not.

Sally may not know that the Unicode Technical Committee exists. Sally may have bought her computer or mobile telephone and just uses it, choosing from the emoji available in a menu system, perhaps never realizing all of the detailed standards work and implementation work that took place before the device was manufactured. It is not that Sally is having a particular emoji recommended to her as such, yet if the Unicode Technical Committee "not-recommends" implementation of some emoji that are in the standards document, then Sally may never get the opportunity to choose to use those emoji.

> So, before we go talking about whether _Unicode_ is accommodating the benefit of consumers, I think should be asking whether _all the popular communications protocols_ are accommodating the benefit of consumers.

Well, all of the various standards needed to produce useful products are important. It is not a matter of one being considered before the other. For a particular emoji to become available in a device that is available to a consumer there are various stages. They are like an AND gate where all inputs must be true in order for the result to be true.

The Unicode Technical Committee has enormous power and influence to affect the future of information technology.

It works both ways. Where an encoding is made there can be progress, yet where an idea is rejected then there is no way forward for an interoperable plain text encoding to become achieved.

I submitted a document in 2015. It was determined to be out of scope and was not included in the Document Register and the Unicode Technical Committee did not consider it.

I submitted a later version and received no reply about it at all.

So I cannot make progress over an interoperable plain text encoding becoming implemented at the present time. Quite a number of UTC meetings have taken place since.

Yet the scope of Unicode is a people-made rule, it could change if people with influence want it to change. The UTC could consider my document and hold a Public Review if it chose to do so.

So, the Unicode Technical Committee has enormous power and influence to affect the future of information technology.

When a "not-recommendation" of what to support takes place the decision to do that "not-recommending" can have significant and long-lasting effects on progress.

William Overington

Friday 31 March 2017

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