Bug #12154

Some unicode dingbats not working in TBB

Added by Kurtis about 2 years ago. Updated about 2 years ago.

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Simple dingbats like the pencil doesn't work on TBB in Tails: ​​

The pencil dingbat is Unicode version 1.1.0 released in June, 1993. ​ I could be mistaken, but it probably should be supported in TBB.

Also, black flag dingbats don't seem to work on TBB on either Windows or Gnu+Linux: ​​ This came out in Unicode 4, which was released 14 years ago. It's not very anarchist of us to not be able to view unicode black flags in Tail's main browser. :-)

It isn't all of the dingbats though, for instance, the Up Down Arrow dingbat does work: ​​

Another example:

a regular multiplication sign works ​​
but a "MULTIPLICATION X" does not ​​

Multiplication X is also Unicode 1.1 which is 24 years old.

When surfing the web, it isn't unusual to come across some of these and it looks silly when they don't render.

I got these example errors while trying to figure out what was going on with and ended up writing a github issue about it, only to close it after I found out that it was a Tor Browser bug: ​ There might be some background info in there worth reading if someone wants to dig into this.

Some people also were talking in this TBB issue about certain emojis not working in any TBB running in Gnu+Linux:

I know that TBB is now only allowing whitelisted fonts. I'm assuming that this was just overlooked after TBB started to do the whitelisting and transfered over to the Noto fonts. I'm curious though, are there fonts that are shipped in Tails that display dingbats well that should be whitelisted in TBB?

I found that the "noto color emoji" font just started getting packaged in Debian. ​

It was said that this should allow for color and black and white emojis once it is finished, but I don't know how to verify that.

In the mean time, that link also said that ​ offers black and white emojis. I wonder if it would render the dingbats too. I don't know how to look through the font to see if it has all of the Unicode 1 thru Unicode 4 dingbats (and beyond) though. If it does, perhaps we could whitelist it in the next TBB release.

I did see that Noto Emoji (not to be confused with Noto Color Emoji) has the pencil dingbat I referenced above: ​ Someone on that Noto Color Emoji Debian Bug page I linked to above said that they couldn't find the source code for it though. If Noto Color Emoji doesn't have these legacy black and white dingbats, does anyone know how to find the Noto Emoji source code?

I also looked at ​ to see if it might describe any packages that cover these old dingbats, but I wasn't able to figure anything out there. Perhaps it helps someone else.

In closing, can anyone help me figure out what debian packaged font should be whitelisted to get all these old Unicode Characters to work on webpages in TBB on Gnu+Linux systems? Can anyone inspect ttf-ancient-fonts to see if it is a good whitelisting font candidate for this or tell me how to do it?


#1 Updated by mercedes508 about 2 years ago

  • Assignee set to Kurtis
  • Priority changed from Normal to Low


I just tried to load those pages on both Tails and regular Tor browser, and the result is the same.

So it's Tor Browser specific, which means that you should probably send your request to Tor Browser rather than Tails bug tracker.


#2 Updated by intrigeri about 2 years ago

  • Status changed from New to Rejected

The cost of keeping this ticket open on our side outweighs the benefits.

#3 Updated by Kurtis about 2 years ago

If anyone else finds this page and wants to follow the progress of getting this fixed, I'm going to be working in from now on to try to get this fixed.

#4 Updated by intrigeri about 2 years ago

If anyone else finds this page and wants to follow the progress of getting this
fixed, I'm going to be working in from now on to try to get
this fixed.

Excellent! (and thanks for adding the link :)

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