From hieroglyphics to emoticons and emojis, the symbols speak the human language. On the occasion of World Emoji Day celebrated every July 17th follows a short history lesson about the symbols that are spreading faster than anything else on the internet.
These are some things you may not have known about those messaging symbols that define today’s online language.
1. The word emoji comes from Japan and is complex, of e (image) and moji (character), according to Wikipedia.
2. The word has been used in Japanese since 1928 but according to the Oxford Dictionary it was first introduced in English in 1997.
3. Emoji appeared in Japan in 1999 but their start was problematic. Then each telecom operator encoded its graphics in its own way, so a user might want to send a smile and the other user would take it on his screen as something that was certainly not a smile.
4. Google gave the solution. In 2007, the giant of technology began to establish a global emoji language in cooperation with Japanese telecoms companies to adopt a common one. So the emojis were added to the Unicode standard, they became another contact element in Gmail and everything is history.
5. In 2011, another giant, Apple, added an emoji keyboard to iOS.
6. The word emoji appeared in Oxford’s dictionaries from 2013.
7. In 2015 the Oxford dictionaries named the emoji with tears of joy as the Word of the Year.
8. This is the most popular emoji today.
9. A total of 2,823 units are included in the Unicode standard. Half of all comments in Instagram include emojis.
10. From 2016 to 2017, the use of emoji by marketing departments increased almost nine times.
11. In 2009 began translating Moby Dick’s entire literary masterpiece into emojis. Emoji Dick, as he is called, won a place in the congressional library in 2014.
12. The original emoji collection created in 1999 by Shigetaka Kurita is hosted today in the permanent collection of the Museum of Contemporary Art (MoMA) in Manhattan, New York.
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