RAY SUAREZ, HOST:
Staying on the topic of words of the year, let's talk about one of the winners from two years ago - emoji - you know, those little cartoon-like pictures. One of the things to look forward to in 2018 is that dozens of new emojis will be unveiled. One of the most popular additions - redheads.
JEREMY BURGE: Red hair, yeah. People felt like they were getting left out.
SUAREZ: That's Jeremy Burge. We reached him at his home in London. He's vice-chair of the Unicode Emoji Subcommittee - yes, that's a real thing. He also runs a website called Emojipedia, devoted to every minute change that has happened to the 2,600 emojis over the years.
BURGE: This is what I do - emojis from when I wake up until when I go to bed.
SUAREZ: Burge is responsible for the new emoji with red hair.
BURGE: Even though I don't have red hair myself, that was the No. 1 request we got for the last two years running, so I felt like I should step up and try and make that happen.
SUAREZ: The committee looks at all the proposed additions and winnows down the list, in part based on how useful they expect the new emoji to be. So far this year, three proposed emojis didn't make the cut.
BURGE: A face with question marks over the eyes, a face that had the letters O and K over the eyes and pile of poo version that was frowning rather and smiling.
SUAREZ: Michael Everson was one of the impassioned commenters who helped kill the frowning excrement. We reached him on Skype about an hour west of Dublin.
MICHAEL EVERSON: Why do we need to send a picture of this? It's just - ah. It's just offensive - needlessly offensive and pointless. It's not cute. It's not funny. It isn't good in any particular way. I don't mind lobster, parrot, peacock, badger - these are good. These are fine. But is there to be an end of it? Could we not have any class?
SUAREZ: Well, if you're looking for class, there's also a cupcake, a superhero, a llama and a teddy bear. Now that's something to smiley face about.
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