Twitter's pistol emoji replaced with squirt gun in new update

The Twitter emoji, more commonly called Twemoji, were updated to version 2.6 today, the latest update since the minor one introduced in late February. It's a pretty standard update, but there is one interesting aspect to it: the "Pistol" emoji (which is actually a cartoon revolver) has been replaced by an equally cartoony squirt gun.

No new emoji were updated in this release, but rather a total of ten were "tweaked" with changes that are for the most part so tiny you're not even likely to notice. The "Pistol" emoji is the only exception, being changed from a brown and gray revolver to a green water gun with a bright orange tip.

The Pistol joined the lineup back in 2010 under Unicode 6.0, later being added in 2015 to Emoji 1.0. Twitter isn't the first company to change the icon from a realistic revolver to a more cartoony, less violence-oriented weapon. Microsoft, for example, swapped out the image with a toy ray gun for Windows 10. WhatsApp, iOS, and Samsung also use alternatives.

Other platforms still feature a realistic revolver or pistol for the "Pistol" emoji, including Facebook/Messenger, HTC, LG, and Google. Realistic gun emoji have fallen out of favor in recent years due to numerous firearm-related attacks and a growing public movement toward gun reform. It won't be surprising to see other companies make similar changes in coming months.

SOURCE: Emojipedia