Emoji People Change Lobster Design After Leg-Related Uproar

Still waiting on a butter emoji to go with it.

By Ethan L. Johns
February 26, 2018

When the Unicode Consortium released its updated list of new emojis for 2018, many were very happy to discover that they would soon be able to tweet about their surf-n-turf dinner using a lobster emoji. Others, however, found one teeny-tiny, itsy-bitsy problem: the lobster was horribly, gruesomely deformed.

Not blood-and-guts gruesome, mind you; turns out the designers at Emojipedia who came up with the sample images for the lobster emoji left off a few legs. And as the website pointed out in a blog post on Monday, they have fixed the problem.

While the original drawing showed two claws and three sets of legs, a real lobster is graced with two claws (yum) and four sets of legs (also yum), which means that the lobster emoji just got a whole lot meatier.

While some—like Maine Senator Angus King—were happy to just have a lobster emoji in the first place, others were more concerned with the anatomical correctness of their keyboard critters.

“The #lobsteremoji is happening!” tweeted the Maine Lobster Festival. Hopefully the final version will have the right number of legs.”

“I just don't understand how this happened. The newly-celebrated lobster emoji is missing two legs,” tweeted Heather Pixley, adding the hashtags #EpicFail, #lobsteremoji and #justiceforlobsters.

In restoring the crustacean to its full-legged glory, the folks at Emojipedia might have made everybody very happy for the moment, but in the end it makes zero difference, because the Emojipedia emojis are merely suggestions as to what the final emojis should look like. Operating system and application manufacturers decide, in the end, what your emojis really look like.

But that’s not to say that the correction serves no purpose. One of the phone companies could have looked at the suggestions and continued to propagate the six-legged error. Google did, after all, put the cheese on the bottom of its burger, which is near-unanimously agreed upon to be completely wrong.

In any case, the Emojipedia people were gracious when confronted by the internet’s aptitude for telling everyone that they’re wrong.

“I have to say that I’m a bit embarrassed we didn’t get the leg count right the first time, but I’m happy it was brought to our attention so quickly!” wrote Chief Emoji Officer Jeremy Burge in an email to the Portland Press Herald. “I hope to visit Maine one day and will be sure to make liberal use of the lobster emoji when I do.”

All’s well that ends well, they say. As long as everybody has the proper amount of legs.

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About Ethan L. Johns

Ethan is the Food News Writer at Genius Kitchen. An expert on the Parisian bistrot, he likes bitters and salted butters, and is no fan of dessert unless it's made with fruit. His hobbies include reading up on the history of borscht and attempting to roll perfect couscous by hand. Twits & Instagram @EthanLJohns