Thoughts on working with the Emoji Subcommittee (was Re: Thoughts on Emoji Selection Process)

James Kass via Unicode unicode at
Wed Aug 15 03:32:41 CDT 2018

Suppose there's someone who has been working with the ESC for a while
and whose frustration level has passed the boiling point.  Let's call
this person "X".  X has become so angry that X is distilling recent
experiences into an exposé article for submission to the media.  The
media outlet, if responsible journalists, would fact-check the
article.  Would the fact-checking find proof, or would it be
determined that it is simply a, uh, dissing contest between two or
more personalities?  (If the latter, one of the tabloids might buy the
article.  They just *love* dissing contests.)

The original thread includes some sweeping allegations concerning
competence and integrity, but offers no specific examples.  Even
though many people do it daily, it's best not to make judgments
without evidence.

A list member kindly sent me links to a pair of documents.



The first one, L2/17-147 (by West, Buff, and Päper), is a request for
more ESC transparency.  It raises a couple of legitimate concerns:
(1) requests complete public documentation of all incoming
submissions, and (2) requests a public roster of ESC members.  The
requests seem reasonable.

The second one, L2/17-192 (by Davis and Edberg), rejects the first one.

A superficial analysis might persuade someone that the ESC does things
the way they like to do things and are going to continue to do things,
so neener-neener.

But if we examine the reasoning behind L2/17-192, it does make some sense.

For (1), there's too many submissions and the vast majority of them
are D.O.A..  Why spend resources documenting non-starters?  L2/17-192
goes on to explain the way viable submissions become public.

For (2), which the ESC rejected first, the underlying reasoning is
clearly stated.  The roster is in a perpetual state of flux, there is
no fixed membership, there is no membership list.

Putting aside any obvious advantages anonymity offers over
accountability, any committee with a constantly shifting membership is
unstable by definition.  Why would any committee want to make its
instability a matter of public record?

Putting aside any snide humor, it does appear that the ESC responds to
requests/suggestions and is willing to work with submitters.  (Based
on one example, at least.)

One one hand, there's a group who is interested in exploiting the
emoji ranges to advance corporate commercial concerns.  On another
hand, there are emoji enthusiasts who want the sterling reputation of
excellence Unicode has earned to continue far into the future.
There's got to be some common ground here.  Why not shake those hands,
find that common ground, and explore it together?  And have some fun
while doing it.  Aren't the emoji supposed to be fun?

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