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Crypto trade Binance removes Twitter emoji that resembled a swastika after outcry

The logo of cryptocurrency exchange Binance.

STR | NurPhoto via Getty Images

Cryptocurrency exchange Binance removed and redesigned an emoji on Twitter, after outcry from users who pointed out it looked like a swastika.

Twitter sometimes lets brands design their own custom emojis to include in hashtags in order to promote their business. In this case, Binance launched an emoji for several hashtags, including #Binance, #BNB and #BitcoinButton.

The associated emoji for these hashtags depicted a block with Binance’s logo surrounded by four pixelated arms each bent at a right angle, similar to the swastika symbol.

Twitter users were quick to pick up on its resemblance to a swastika. “The new Binance logo is a literal swastika emoji,” one user wrote.

Other users highlighted the significance of the day Binance chose to launch the emoji: Apr. 20, Adolf Hitler’s birthday.

The Binance symbol wasn’t tilted, suggesting it may have been inspired by Asian symbolism — it is used to represent spirituality in the Hindu and Buddhist religions — rather than the emblem of the German Nazi party which was abolished in 1945.

Binance has since removed the emoji and replaced it with a new one that looks more like a coin.

“Well that was obviously really embarrassing,” the company wrote on Twitter.

“We’re not sure how that emoji got through several layers of review without anyone noticing, but we immediately flagged the issue, pulled it down, and the new emoji design is being rolled out as we speak,” Binance said.

Founded in 2017 by Chinese-Canadian entrepreneur Changpeng Zhao, Binance is the world’s largest digital currency exchange, handling more than $18 billion in trading volumes in a single day, according to CoinGecko data.

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