Some of us never wanted Clippy on our desktops again, but thanks to Microsoft and dedicated Clippy fans, that's about to change. Fortunately, Clippy isn't returning as an Office Assistant, but instead appears as a paperclip emoji in Microsoft 365.
Clippy returns as an emoji
In a tweet, Microsoft said that Clippy will be brought back as an office emoji if the tweet hits 20,000 likes. The tweet significantly exceeded that goal in just a few hours, rising into the hundreds of thousands and beyond.
We weren't sure if Microsoft was really serious about bringing Clippy back, but it turns out that Microsoft intends to do so.
A post on the Microsoft Design blog revealed Clippy's new emoji form, which replaces the standard paperclip emoji in Microsoft 365. The previously flat, boring paper clip is now being replaced by Clippy, the friendly but very irritating virtual assistant that plagued Microsoft Office for many years.
Now you have the opportunity to conjure up a clippy emoji – whether you want to use it for irony or to represent a real paper clip. "Sure, we may use fewer paper clips today than we did in Clippy's heyday, but we couldn't resist the nostalgic pull," wrote Claire Anderson, Microsoft's art director.
Microsoft's other emojis are undergoing a redesign
The addition of Clippy wasn't the only change Microsoft made to its emoji library. Just in time for World Emoji Day on July 17th, Microsoft is revising its library with 1,888 emojis.
Today we're announcing the redesign of our emojis: 1,888 of them to be precise plus five brand new emojis that signal our new perspective on work, expression and the spaces in between. https://t.co/lBuVxIha8j
– Microsoft (@Microsoft) July 15, 2021
The redesigned emojis all have a 3D design with bright, saturated colors to reflect a more playful look. Microsoft also added five new emojis, all of which reflect the idea of working from home.
While one emoji shows a person multitasking from their laptop, another shows a person dancing in a dress shirt and pajama bottoms. Microsoft also added an emoji of a taped webcam, as well as an emoji of someone with a microphone muted.
Image source: Microsoft
While some of the redesigns are already in place in Flipgrid, the others will be rolled out to 365 over the next few weeks. The set won't arrive in Microsoft Teams and Windows until late 2021, and Yammer and Outlook users will have to wait until 2022.
Do we really need an emoji for everything?
If things go on as they are, we don't even need words to entertain ourselves. The clippy emoji could soon become the universal symbol of passive aggressiveness.
Joking aside, Microsoft's new emojis are likely there to keep remote workers healthy. Working from home can be a bit lonely. So a brightly smiling face can add an element of humanity to online-based conversations.
How emojis changed our communication
Emojis have evolved from cute images that we add to our texts to a much more meaningful role in our communication.
About the author
(540 articles published)
Emma is a senior writer and junior editor for the creative sector. She graduated with a bachelor's degree in English and combines her love of technology with writing.
From Emma Roth
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