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Emoji are “picture characters” often used like emoticons, either expressively or as punctuation in text notes, as self-standing responses in conversations, or as reactions (reacji).

IndieWeb Examples

Emoji are prominently used in reacji responses.


standardized vs platform-specific display

Many silos standardize their emoji display by replacing them with the same image on all platforms. (e.g. WhatsApp, Twitter, Telegram, Threma). Replacing them with images also allows to show colored emoji everywhere, which is very difficult using fonts, since there are conflicting standards for multi-colored glyphs. Several permissively-licensed image sets are available, e.g. by Twitter, Emoji One and Google. If a site replaces emoji with images, it should set the alt="" attribute to the text version of the emoji.



Emoji are rendered differently on different platforms, devices, and operating systems, with some examples leading to differing interpretations of the same emoji, depending on how they are displayed to the user.

Sometimes these differences can be stark enough to cause a miscommunication between senders and readers.

may harm accessibility

Many people have begun to put large strings of emojis into usernames. Accessibility experts argue those who use screen readers must get through verbal explanations of each emoji in a field that was designed for a name and not biographical information. See tweet


https://eev.ee/blog/2016/04/12/apple-did-not-invent-emoji/ Good overview over the history and differences https://socializzed.com/en/blog/socialeaks/dp-211sw-emoji-rosetta-stone The first emoji set for a mobile phone in 1997


Emoji were originally associated with cellular telephone usage in Japan, but now popular worldwide. The word emoji comes from the Japanese 絵 (e ≅ picture) + 文字 (moji ≅ written character).

See Also