Twitter flips out over Apple’s new bird-flipping emoji

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Look for a one-fingered salute coming soon to a text near you.
Look for a one-fingered salute coming soon to a text near you.
Photo: iOS 9.1

Remember in grade school when you learned what the middle finger meant? Twitter was kind of like that Thursday morning as giggly and astonished people reported their discovery of a middle-finger emoji in their iOS update.

This is not new news. We knew the finger would fly when the iOS update was announced earlier. Maybe it got lost in the excitement of finally getting a taco emoji. Who knows. But the tweets about the bird were refreshing 20 and 30 at a time every few seconds this morning.

To most taking to social media, the middle finger feels naughty and delicious.

“What a time to be alive with a middle finger emoji,” wrote Grace @newbs.

Exclamations of “Finally” and “OMG” mixed with warnings to friends about its overuse in texts to come. Even tweets in different languages were understood. We have a common language – at least when we’re pissed anyway.

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The iPhone 6s is Apple’s best phone yet, Apple TV may finally get on track and that new iPad Pro (with an Apple Pencil) seems like a powerful beast. But the middle finger could eclipse the many great products as the biggest Apple news of the year.

There are even signs of some steadfast Android users making the switch just to have a middle finger.

Today’s Guardian newspaper wrote about the sudden surge in Apple users downloading iOS 9.1. Yes, the Brits get Apple News and some additional security fixes, but the real reason, the writer surmised, was to have the offensive digit as a succinct tool for communication.

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