In celebration of Flag Day, a government contractor adopted the American flag emoji.
CSRA, an IT and professional services provider, announced Wednesday it officially sponsored the emoji through the Unicode Consortium’s Adopt-a-Character program because of an employee’s nudge.
Chris Leonard, a scientific review manager, suggested CSRA adopt the American flag to represent its work for the federal government. The flag also appears in the company's logo.
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“I’m sure that, like many of you, I had no idea that emojis could be adopted. As Dr. Leonard informed me, a small but growing number of companies, organizations and individuals are beginning to adopt emojis,” CSRA CEO Larry Prior wrote on LinkedIn.
Anyone can adopt—or dedicate—an emoji. So far, the program has 30 gold sponsors with exclusive ties to emojis, including some with obvious company ties, like the avocado sponsored by Avocados from Mexico and the cloud sponsored by IBM.
But like everything on the internet, there are some head scratchers. The baseball emoji tied to the Oakland Athletics seems clear cut, but what's up with the elephant and tree?
Sorry, the poo and eggplant emojis are taken.
So, how much does it cost to adopt an emoji? For gold level, someone’s coughing up $5,000 in tax-deductible donations to the Unicode Consortium. Silver-level sponsorship costs $1,000 and shares sponsorship among five people, while a $100 bronze sponsorship features no limits.
The funds go the consortium's work to expand the range of languages supported by computers, cellphones and other devices. Only 100 languages of the 7,000 living languages are "well-supported" by such tech, according to the consortium.
As a volunteer, Leonard translates free and open source children’s educational software for digitally disadvantaged communities, according to a CSRA statement.