Where do emoji come from?

by on December 28th, 2016

foodemojiI have recently read a couple of posts about food emoji and really wanted to learn about how an emoji goes from an idea to a pictograph on my phone and why there are only 82 food emoji. The Unicode Consortium Emoji Subcommittee makes decisions about adding new emoji. Unicode is a computing industry standard for the consistent encoding, representation, and handling of text expressed in most of the world’s writing systems.  The standard is maintained by the Unicode Consortium.  The first emoji were created in 1999 in Japan for cellphone users.  It was a way to express something in a single character when text messages were limited to 60 to 140 characters.  Emoticons, not be to be confused with emoji, first appeared in 1982.   iemoji.com  is a great site to learn more about the world of emoji.

The more I read about Unicode and the consortium, the more confused I became.  I felt like I was reading a foreign language written in English.  But I did find out how you can submit a proposal for a new emoji. Not all submissions are approved, here’s a tumblr of emoji rejected by the Emoji Subcommittee. If you are curious about how an emoji is expressed across platforms and social media sites take a look at emojopedia.org.

2 Responses to “Where do emoji come from?”

  1. Kandy Maharas says:

    Fun article – I was trying to find a shamrock on my phone emojis but gave up. That was a nice treat to find fireworks when one typed in Happy New Year! on an iPhone and hit Send.

  2. Kandy Maharas says:

    I forgot to say a friend of my daughter’s wrote a whole book of written with nothing but emojis, as part of her MA thesis. They both laughed when I said I liked it but I couldn’t read it! It’s like learning a new language.

Leave a Reply