1 Nov: We ❤️Emoji

The first ever emoji set, including the earliest incarnations of 🍷, ❤️, and 💩, was released in Japan on 1st November, 1997. But the only users could send and receive them were owners of a now-forgotten ‘SkyWalker’ handset made by J-Phone. ☹️

Emoji didn’t truly transform written communication in the West until some fourteen years later, when emoji keyboards came by default on iPhone (Android users, incredibly, had to wait until 2013 🤯).

In this episode, Arion, Rebecca and Olly discuss how unloved 1990s font Wingdings paved the way for graphical communication; ponder whether emojis can be used in legal contracts; and reveal how an obscure internal bulletin board at a University helped to create the smiley, and its opposite, ‘the frowny’… 

There are NINE MINUTES more of emoji-based bantz available exclusively to our Patreon subscribers*. What was the OED’s Word of the Year, 2015? What are our team’s most-used emojis? And does 🙏 represent high-fives, or prayers? Find out now at https://patreon.com/Retrospectors (*top two tiers).

Further Reading:

• ‘Correcting the Record on the First Emoji Set’ (emojipedia, 2019): https://blog.emojipedia.org/correcting-the-record-on-the-first-emoji-set/

• ‘History of Emoticons and Emoji’ (ThoughtCo, 2019): https://www.thoughtco.com/emoticons-and-emoji-1991412

• ‘A Brief History of Emoji’(The Open University, 2017): 

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