For awhile there, it seemed like there was a dearth of apps for New Zealand’s MÄori to express themselves digitally.Â
But now there’s Emotiki, which calls itself the world’s first MÄori emoji app. And it looks pretty awesome.
Available on iOS and Android, the sticker app includes 200 different MÄori icons, from emotions to food, to sports and animals associated with the cultures of Aotearoa.Â
It’s not true Emoji as you would find in your smartphone’s keyboard â the folks at Unicode call the shots on that. They’re more like images you can share via your messaging app.
The app was created by Te Puia, a Maori arts and culture institute based in Rotorua.Â
Eruera West, Te Puia’s project manager, came up with the idea following concerns from young MÄori who said they had no emoji to show off their culture.
Te Puia consulted with MÄori elders during the app’s creation process, and she says the response was very positive.
West hopes not only just MÄori kids will use it, but anyone who has an interest in the culture.
“Maori, Pakeha, even tourists âÂ we hope anyone who wants to share the MÄori language and culture with us will use it, and tell their friends.”