The tech company joins Apple, WhatsApp, Samsung and Twitter in swapping out the realistic handgun
Google is coming for your guns.
The tech company this week became the latest to scrap its realistic gun emoji for a brightly colored toy water gun, Emojipedia reports, in an effort likely aimed at minimizing “cross-platform confusion.” The change started rolling out recently to Android users.
Google now joins several other companies in unloading the controversial emoji’s ammo: Apple led the pack in 2016, changing its deadly firearm emoji to a neon-green water gun after several high-profile mass shootings. Messaging app WhatsApp released an orange emoji pistol in 2017, while Samsung made its own change earlier this year.
— Emojipedia 📙 (@Emojipedia) April 24, 2018
Just two weeks ago, Twitter changed its gray revolver “Twemoji” to a green squirt gun. And while Facebook still shows realistic gun emoji, a company rep confirmed to Emojipedia that the platform would replace its handgun with a squirt gun.
That leaves Microsoft as the sole tech giant clinging to its gun. The company, which had actually used a yellow toy gun back as recently as 2015, swapped it for a realistic handgun with its 2016 update “in an apparent need to conform to universal emoji standards,” The Verge reported at the time. Microsoft didn’t immediately return a Moneyish request for comment on whether it planned to change its revolver back into a toy.
The gun-violence conversation has escalated recently after a school shooter in Parkland, Fla., killed 17 people in February. The mass shooting’s teen survivors have inspired a nationwide movement calling for legislative reform — and kept gun safety in the headlines for months.
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