Emoji might seem fun and playful, but the process to create and approve new designs for them is not easy.
If you take a look at Unicode Consortium’s list of selection factors, it quickly becomes clear there are a lot of rules for requesting a new emoji and that not every request will be considered to be added.
Emoji Request makes requesting one much easier. By trying to bridge the gap between all emoji users worldwide and the strict creation process, it hopes to crowdsource people’s ideas and opinions on the future of the icons.
The mock-ups are designed to give an idea of what they might look like, but will eventually be translated into a sentence like Smiling Face With Sunglasses. This is done to give companies the freedom of creating an image that fits within their own design language.
Right now it’s not possible to upload a design to make it available for voting, and only emoji that have a chance of actually being accepted according to the selection factors are currently added to the list. The best way to request a new designs seems to be to reach out to the creators.
When an emoji has a large number of votes, it doesn’t automatically get added to the next version of Unicode — it still has to go through the same process. However, one of the factors for consideration is how often a design is requested, and this definitely gives the Consortium an easy way to see which ones are popular.
So, what does happen if a request makes it to the top of the list? According to the company behind the website, they’ll file a formal request for it to be added — and then it’s up to Unicode.