Russia May Ban Gay Emojis, Implement Fines

by Jason St. Amand

National News Editor

Thursday July 30, 2015

Everyone loves using emojis right? Wrong.

In an attempt to crack down on "homosexual propaganda" officials from Russia's state media regulator Roskomnadozr, which oversees telecommunications, are seeking to ban gay-friendly emojis on the iPhone keyboard. If everything goes as planned, Russians caught using the outlawed emojis could face fines between 50,000 to 100,000 rubles ($837 to $1,674), according to GQ Italia.

The Russian agency is calling for an investigation into the use of gay emojis on social media, claiming the pro-gay characters unveiled by Apple in April are a problem and part of the "spread on social media of untraditional sexual relations among minors," according to Russian news site Vocativ. If Roskomnadozr's claims turn out to be "true" it would violate Russia's controversial "homosexual propaganda" ban, which was signed into law by President Vladimir Putin in 2013.

The agency added the gay emojis, which show same-sex couples holding hands and same-sex parents, "defy family values" and "form disrespect for parents and other family members."

If the emojis do violate the "homosexual propaganda" law, it seems doubtful the possible emoji movie will hit Russian theaters.

[H/T Gay Star News]