Wednesday, 08 June 2022 16:25

White Wine Emojency

Written by  Staff Reporters
Juliana Foster Juliana Foster

It's become increasingly apparent that digital keyboards are missing a vital emoji, says New Zealand Winegrowers Global PR Manager Juliana Foster, who's leading a campaign to raise a glass of white wine on screens worldwide.

If a picture is worth 1,000 words, what's the significance of an emoji?

In this modern world, everyone has such a short attention span that when you're scrolling through social media, no one tends to sit down and read a bunch of text when you can get your message across with just a couple of emojis. Emojis are meant to be fun and lighthearted and convey a broad range of emotions or messages efficiently and in a way that words sometimes cannot. So, having a white wine emoji can help us communicate our New Zealand white wine message more effectively and efficiently in a time poor world.

How long have you been focussed on a white wine emoji?

The campaign for the white wine emoji officially kicked off on 1 May and will be running all month. The petition for the white wine emoji is being used to highlight New Zealand white wine, which accounts for 93% of our wine exports. New Zealand's top three white wine exports - Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris and Chardonnay - all celebrated their 'special' wine days in May, and we at New Zealand Winegrowers thought it was the perfect time to campaign for the white wine emoji and shine a spotlight on New Zealand white wine.

Who gets to decide?

The Unicode Consortium gets to make the decisions around emoji submissions and what is approved and declined each year. The consortium is a non-profit corporation devoted to developing, maintaining, and promoting software internationalisation standards and data, and are tasked at protecting the global keyboard. They're the emoji bosses!

Has it been requested before?

From my understanding a winery in the United States has made a submission previously. We are not told why their application failed, but the Unicode Consortium have a specific set of selection factors such as usage level, distinctiveness, and whether the proposed emoji fills a gap in existing types of emoji.

Since a red wine emoji already exists, a white wine emoji is seen as a colour variation, which is not grounds for creation of a new emoji (as stipulated by the Unicode Consortium). The addition of a white wine emoji has to be carefully considered, as it might open the door to many emoji colour variations. So, we're thinking of a change in glassware used as well as colour, among other factors we are proposing.

Why is now the right time?

The rise in use of technology during the pandemic has highlighted that the white wine emoji has been missing from our digital keyboards since the creation of emojis in the late 1990s. The red wine emoji is a highly present and frequently used icon on every smartphone in the world and it has been a way for the global wine industry to promote the red part of their production and products, but how do we convey our white wine stories? With our top three wine exports celebrated in May, it was the perfect time to campaign for the white wine emoji while highlighting New Zealand white wine.

Emojis that have been declined within the last two years are not eligible for re-review and the last submission for a white wine emoji was made in 2019, so now we are able to make a submission again.

Tell us about the petition and industry support

The petition is one way we are communicating the New Zealand wine message to the world via this ‘emojency’. New Zealand’s quest for the white wine emoji has been capturing headlines across the world, and in turn shining a spotlight on New Zealand wine and the New Zealand wine industry.

The petition will form part of the submission proposal to the Unicode Consortium which closes on 31 July each year. The more the industry gets behind and shares the petition, not only will we gain more signatures and illustrate to the Unicode Consortium the demand for the white wine emoji, but it will continue to shine a spotlight on New Zealand wine.

Finally, what’s the perfect use of a white wine emoji?

There are so many examples!

But one I’d definitely use is:  ❤ NZ <white wine emoji>

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