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iHub By Mugethi Gitau / March 12, 2014

Emoji discrimination?

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If you are an avid texter/IM-er then emoji and smileys are your friend. Then no doubt you have noticed how discriminative most popular IM apps (WhatsApp, Skype, Facebook messenger, Hangouts) are to Africans, especially African woman. Right?

 

A number of very important emoticons for Any African woman to express herself are conspicuously missing from the IM apps.

  • Hands on hips  – any self-respecting African Woman, ahem, metro man or really macho man needs this emoticon. This is the ultimate expression of indignation.
  • NKT!  – We all need this one, duh! It is the proper African way of expressing annoyance. No matter how much you like the person you are chatting with, they are bound to annoy you at some point. At this point quickly put in your African click  – NKT!
  • Mscheeew! – Your traditional African sneer right there. It comes accompanied by the appropriate facial expression. This is necessary when you hear something so nonsensical there is no other way to express it.
  • African sassy head shake (not to be confused with the Indian shaking of the head yes. Or just generally shaking their head, LOL)

And the list goes on. Feel free to add more missing emoticons in the comments section.

 

Excited to learn of the messaging app Telegram which was thrust into the limelight by the acquisition of WhatsApp by the NSA, oops, Facebook. (My bad. You’ve all heard the rumors) And just to give us a taste of what’s coming, we had a couple of hours down time on Saturday 28th Feb. (Things is gonna be different), after someone has spent USD 19B on an app (you know, just USD 7B above Kenya’s entire budget!) nobody expects that’s its going be business as usual.

 

So Dear Devs

 

We look to you to work to create plugins for emoji that will capture our imaginations and our hearts and make us feel right at home. We fully expect you will work with UX/UI designers to give it that real authentic feel.  A couple of stern matriarch emoji are necessary to keep everyone online in line.

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Author : Mugethi Gitau

Mugethi Gitau is an all round creative. A techie by training, she is into all things design - Graphics, fashion, interiors. A writer of fiction and a poet, and tech/gadget blogger on hergeekyness.com. Mugethi has a rich mix of experience ranging from training, community development and advocacy, research and design. A people's person, she enjoys linking the iHub Tech Community with each other, investors/corporates, academics and other stakeholders. She has a dream that one day, Kenyan techies will innovate their own computers and mobile devices and people all over the world will buy them. And use them.


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