While I obviously disagree with most of what Schiff said, I actually do think that “skin” color in emoji should probably be addressed. I have two proposed solutions:
- Make it a non-human color (other than yellow, since that is considered “tainted” now) by default.</li
- Randomly assign a realistic tint.
And then don’t give the user any control whatsoever over it.
I am a professor and a drag queen. When in drag, I am often asked, “Do your students know?!” There is an implication that pedagogy, scholarship, and drag performance exist in separate realms that do not (and should not) mix or meet. Drag’s subversive nature creates the perception that drag performance runs counter to serious academic inquiry.
We should talk about citation generally, as a community-building practice, as a discussion enriching practice, and as a practice that can undo or prevent the force of erasure in terms of marginalized voices. I want us to talk about citation as a loving practice.
This is a real problem with real impacts on people’s lives. Sure, a few incorrect Youtube captions aren’t a matter of life and death. But some of these applications have a lot higher stakes. Take the medical dictation software study. The fact that men enjoy better performance than women with these technologies means that it’s harder for women to do their jobs.
Could there have been any greater compliment than to perform Michelle’s 2008 speech, start to finish, like a Led Zeppelin tribute band faithfully replicating “Stairway to Heaven?” If she had done this, the responses would have been more varied than the predictable ones she got. Just think of the rich conversations that could have started.