Emoji Facts
Emoji Facts

48 Random Emoji Facts

James Israelsen
By James Israelsen, Associate Writer
Published November 28, 2020
  • “Emoji” is derived from three Japanese words: “e” for picture, “mo” for write, “ji” for character.[4]
  • The first emojis were created by Shigetaka Kurita in 1999. Kurita created 176 emojis for use in his company’s email system. Unicode programmers adopted emojis in 2010, making them a worldwide phenomenon.[4]
  • Although emojis were instantly popular in Japan, where they were initially released, it took over a decade for them to catch on in other nations.[4]
  • Shigetaka Kurita, the creator of emojis, was originally told by his company that he could not include a “poop” emoji in his collection; that was left for other contributors to add.[4]
  • Apple included an official Emoji keyboard in their iOS in 2011.[3]
  • Unicode currently has 2,789 emojis in their standardized list.[4]
  • Laughing Emoji
    They're happy tears
  • In 2018, Emojitracker announced that the most popular emoji being used on Twitter was the “face with tears of joy,” which had been used over 2 billion times since 2013.[4]
  • New York’s Museum of Modern Art obtained the original emoji set for their collections in 2016.[4]
  • The Emoji Movie, released in 2017, currently has a score of 7% on Rotten Tomatoes.[6]
  • Fan Jesse Hill created an unofficial video for Beyonce’s “Drunk in Love” that translates the song entirely into emojis.[7]
  • Fred Benenson ran a successful Kickstarter campaign to fund the translation of American classic Moby Dick into an emoji version. "Emoji Dick" pairs every single sentence from the original novel with a string of emoji equivalents.[5]
  • The White House recently released an economic report illustrated with emoji.[3]
  • Oxford Dictionary voted the “face with tears of joy” emoji their 2015 "Word" of the Year.[3]
  • Unicode’s Consortium receives so many proposals for new emojis to be added to their official lexicon that their emoji subcommittee meets twice a week.[3]
  • In 2015, Unicode responded to criticisms about the lack of diversity in emojis by introducing the option to change the skin color of an emoji.[3]
  • A 2017 Unicode Emoji update added mythical creatures—such as elves, mermaids, and vampires—to the collection.[3]
  • The official Emoji lexicon includes three gender-neutral emojis of various ages.[3]
  • Shocked emoji
    Who said emojis aren't high culture?
  • The “extremely shocked” emoji was loosely based on the painting The Scream by Edvard Munch.[1]
  • The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, in conjunction with the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, created a mosquito emoji to describe illnesses, such as Zika and malaria, that are spread by mosquitos, in a way that illiterate people could understand.[3]
  • Apple’s program “Animoji” tracks a person’s facial expressions and translates them into the face of some emoji animals, robot, or a pile of poop.[3]
  • Apple and Android have both worked to streamline their emojis so that they will look the same across different devices.[3]
  • An emoji that shows a building underneath a pink heart originally symbolized an invitation to meet up at a Japanese “love hotel,” where rooms can be rented by the hour.[1]
  • An emoji of two women with black bunny ears, which is generally used to symbolize friendship, was actually derived from Japan’s Bunny Woman, who is loosely based on a Playboy Bunny.[1]
  • Although the Beefeater emoji is meant to symbolize Britain’s ceremonial guards, confused Americans sometimes use it to mean “sketchy guy.”[1]
  • The pizza emoji is often used to symbolize “cheese” in general.[1]
  • Added together, a person with crossed arms, a hand pointing to the right, and a cow head mean, “Don’t have a cow!”[1]
  • Linguistic experts note that one difference between Emoji and other forms of communication is that the meaning of an idea can change by adding more of the same emojis, whereas repeating ourselves when we are writing or talking only makes us repetitive.[2]
  • There are two camel emojis; users can choose between a camel with one or two humps.[1]
  • Some linguists assert that Emoji is the first truly universal language.[2]
  • Emoji Emotions
    Since emojis represent universal objects and emotions, they can be understood by everyone regardless of linguistic differences

  • Emoji users can join together the peace-sign hand emoji and the baby head emoji to indicate the phrase “Yo, baby.”[1]
  • In 2015, an American teenager was arrested for terrorism after he posted a message on Facebook that combined three handgun emojis with the emoji for a police officer.[2]
  • Tennis star Andy Murray made news in 2015 when he posted a pre-wedding Tweet that explained his plans for the big day solely through emojis.[2]
  • Buzzfeed posted the first interview conducted entirely in Emoji on their site in 2015.[2]
  • Every Friday, the BBC publishes the most recent headlines in Emoji and invites radio listeners to call in and guess the headlines’ meanings.[2]
  • New York Public Radio’s website posts subway updates in Emoji.[2]
  • Visual designer Ken Hale has published an Emoji re-telling of Alice in Wonderland.[2]
  • Emoji Usage
    Emojis have gone from being a fad to part of everyday discourse
  • More than 80% of all adults regularly employ emojis in their text messages.[2]
  • According to emojitracker, hundreds of tweets containing emojis are published online every second of every day.[2]
  • Finland’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs created its own set of national emojis, which includes a Nokia phone, people in saunas, and a headbanger.[2]
  • Unicode has strict rules forbidding emojis that depict actual persons, living or dead.[2]
  • “The Dumpling Project” was a Kickstarter campaign that raised $12,000 to successfully petition for the addition of a “dumpling” emoji.[2]
  • Some critics complain that the list of official emojis isn’t as diverse as it ought to be, due to the presence of 8 Americans among the 11 members of the Unicode subcommittee that decides which emojis make the list.[2]
  • An adage regarding the internet called Poe’s Law states that, given the lack of nuance in digital text, the use of emojis is the only thing making it possible to create a parody that won’t be misunderstood by someone as being sincere.[2]
  • A 2019 study published in PLOS One relayed connections between emojis and interpersonal relationships. The researchers found that single people who regularly used emojis in their correspondence tended to date and have sex more often than those who didn't.[2]
  • Due to its frequent use to symbolize a part of male anatomy, Instagram temporarily blocked searches for the “aubergine” emoji on its website.[2]
  • Apple changed the handgun emoji to a “water pistol” symbol in its 10.0 iOS.[2]
  • An elementary school in Colorado was recently evacuated after an eight-year-old innocently sent the school an email that contained the bomb, gun, and knife emojis.[2]
  • A member of Parliament recently received an emoji death threat that was deemed to be a legitimate and was subsequently investigated by British authorities.[2]
  • Interesting Emoji INFOGRAPHIC
    Emoji Infographic Thumbnail

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