It truly seems like, these days, there’s an emoji for just about everything, even uncommon (or totally nonexistent) things, like mermaids, zombies, and fairies. (Oh my!) But one of the few very common things that hasn’t been emojified yet is the interracial couple. Well, Tinder took notice of this issue, and today, Feb. 27, the dating app is kicking off a campaign called “#RepresentLove: The Interracial Couple Emoji Project” to help make interracial couple emojis a thing. Can I get a YAAAAAS?!
If you’ve ever swiped on Tinder, you’d know that it’s full of beautifully diverse people of all sizes and ethnicities. That’s probably why 92 percent of its users say that dating apps and sites have made it easier to meet people who are different from them. After a September 2017 study from Cornell University revealed that dating apps may have contributed to a higher rate of interracial marriages, Tinder commissioned a global survey on interracial relationships, and the results showed incredible insight into the importance of interracial relationships and how people perceive them.
According to the survey, 72 percent of daters report that dating apps and websites have made them more open-minded when it comes to whom they date. Even more amazing is that 55 percent of those surveyed say these apps have helped remove the stigma around interracial dating.
This is incredible news, because it shows that dating apps are helping to break down the (ancient, unnecessary) walls that surround dating outside your own culture.
“As a result, we were inspired to be at the forefront of creating change,” Tinder stated in a press release. “We want to foster an inclusive and diverse community of people on our platform that supports each other, no matter what our similarities or differences are.”
This open-mindedness is a beautiful thing, clearly shared by millions of people around the world. But if so many people are totally for interracial couples and dating, why aren't there interracial couple emojis? Tinder is calling for a change, and honestly, it’s necessary. Even though emoji versions of most types of families and couples were released in 2015, interracial couples have been excluded from the batch for far too long.
As part of the Interracial Couple Emoji Project, Tinder is asking its users, supporters, or anyone who believes that love is love to sign their petition on Change.org. According to their official petition page, the emoji proposal process can take up to two years, so getting as many people to back the project ASAP might make it happen sooner rather than later. Tinder is also encouraging people to share the video (above) of their campaign concept to spread the word!
For couples who feel extra passionate about bringing this issue to the surface, today, Feb. 27, take a picture together in the classic emoji hand-holding stance (you know the one). Post the picture on Twitter, tag @Tinder, and use the hashtag #RepresentLove. By doing so, you could win that photo of you and your bae in emoji form.
As someone who grew up around interracial relationships throughout my entire life, the possibility of seeing these couples represented in the emoji-verse could be huge. Representation is so important to people of color, and being included, either on-screen at the movies or on-smaller-screen in the emoji keyboard, makes us feel seen. Everyone deserves to feel validated, and every relationship deserves to be recognized, because loving relationships, like people, are amazing! It’s great that a company is willing to put up a fight in order to represent a group of minorities. Here’s hoping the project pulls through and we can continue painting a more inclusive picture of what couples look like today.
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