When Were Emojis Created & How Are Emojis Made?

What's The Deal
By: Jimmy Rhoades | Victor Padilla Posted: 9:19 AM, May 17, 2019

One of the best communication tools available to today’s texters – emojis! But when were emojis created, and how are emojis made? We spoke with Jennifer Lee, co-founder of Emojination, who filled us in on the history of emojis.

 

When Were Emojis Created?

 

If you’ve been wondering when were emojis created?, then listen up! “Emoji were originally created in Japan in the 1990s,” explains Jennifer. “They were added to the unicode set in 2010, and added more importantly to iPhones in 2011-2012 – and then they became explosive in popularity after that.” Awesome!

 

How Are Emojis Made?

 

Now let’s dive into how emojis are made. “Emoji are regulated by an organization called Unicode, which is a non-profit whose members are predominantly large U.S. multinational tech companies,” shares Jennifer. Think companies like Microsoft, Google, Apple, and Facebook! But if you think Big Business has emojis locked up, not so fast. Jennifer says anyone in the world can propose an emoji – but you’ve got to have a very good proposal. Read on for four steps on how emojis are made.

 

The Idea

 

First, you’ll need the idea. “You have to answer questions about – is this filling an existing gap in the sort of emoji kingdom?,” advises Jennifer. For example, the new documentary Picture Character followed one woman’s quest to fill a glaring need: there was no hajib emoji! Thanks to teenager Rayouf Alhumedhi, now there is.

The Picture

Now that you’ve identified a hole in the emoji kingdom, what you’ll need next is the picture that conveys your idea. “You definitely want an emoji that has a clear and definable image,” Jennifer suggests. Then include your sample pictograph in your submission, which needs to be in both color and black and white.

 

Do Your Homework

 

Next, you need to do your homework. “You have to give a bunch of statistics around why you think this emoji has demand. Basically, you can Google your search terms and screen grab the results. Do the same thing for Bing, YouTube, and sometimes you can use Wikipedia. If the numbers are high, it shows interest in the topic of the image.

 

What Not to Do

 

Finally, here’s what not to do! “They want things that are sort of really universal and timeless, because once you’re an emoji, you’re always an emoji,” says Jennifer. So the unicode folks might be wary of things like VR goggles. Other no-nos? “In the emoji set, they do not do brands, celebrities, or deities.” So no McDonalds, no Kim Kardashian, no Jesus.

 

If you’ve been wondering when were emojis created?, now you know this and more!

 

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