What is emoji?

Posted on May 11, 2024

I read a blog post about the history of emojis. The article was full of details and descriptions. The author didn’t give a strict definition of what emojis are and suggested that everyone can have their own idea about them.

After thinking about it, I came up with my own definition.

To me, emojis are like emotional signs that we use in communication alongside letters. This definition excludes other types of visual languages, like hieroglyphics, which are pictures or symbols representing words. While similar to emojis, hieroglyphics are a type of alphabet.

Here are five rules for emojis that I think are important:

  • They should represent an idea or emotion.
  • They should be easy to write or draw.
  • They should be self-explanatory.
  • They should be usable with any alphabet.
  • They should be used in communication.

Things that aren’t emojis include:

  • Pictograms
  • Icons
  • Stickers

In conclusion, emojis are more than just small pictures on our screens; they’re a unique form of emotional expression in the digital age. While their origins may be traced back to simple pictographs, emojis have evolved into a universal language of emotion that transcends linguistic barriers. So the next time you use an emoji, remember its power to convey feelings and ideas across the vast landscape of human communication.