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Today I found my first ever (to the best of memory) emoji in a post.

emoji post on Pets

Source

Having no idea this was even possible I came here looking for some history. I found there is an tag. There seems to be consensus that they add little to no value on SE per Do we want emojis in posts? & Support Emoji in Markdown we also know they don't translate well on all devices iOS SE: What happens when I use Emoji's?

I don't find any history other then this one post Emojis in careers messaging result in �� where there is any focused attempt to support them. I don't find any history of discussion on supporting them.

Two questions

  1. Is it possible to disable emojis across Stack Exchange?

If yes

  1. Should we disable emojis across Stack Exchange?
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    Anyway, while there is no official policy (no response from SE staff and likely there will never be), there is a non official consensus that this is just noise and should be edited out from posts. Commented Feb 3, 2019 at 11:49
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    @ShadowWizard The dupe to me looks like a discussion that says 'we'd rather not have them in posts' and this looks like a follow up on that discussing disabling emoji's all together in some technical way as a result of the consensus in that other post? I've reopend it as such
    – Tinkeringbell Mod
    Commented Feb 3, 2019 at 11:50
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    @ShadowWizard You can't really request a feature if you don't even know if it's technically feasible to implement something like it. So a discussion asking about that seems fine to me. Also, posting the same answers here won't work: An answer saying that emoji's don't belong in posts (like the answers on that other thread) won't answer 'can emoji's be disabled' and 'should we disable the possibility of using emoticons'.
    – Tinkeringbell Mod
    Commented Feb 3, 2019 at 11:59
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    As far as I can tell, emojies are generated with unicode. I don't believe it's possible to selectively disable unicode—it would be all or nothing. And there are many very useful unicode characters that we don't want to disable. Commented Feb 3, 2019 at 14:05

2 Answers 2

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Completely disabling emojis is apparently a bad idea, since, very intuitively, there could be valid questions asking about emojis, on various sites like Ask Apple, Graphic Design and Super User. It's also possible on Stack Overflow, even in code.

Emojis are also perfectly valid in Chat, as there's no strict quality control there (chat is just chat). Despite, one may argument its validity in comments, but since questions and answers can contain emojis, why not comments, especially when it's related?

😁

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There are situations where they're useful - with questions about emoji for example. It's also technically difficult since emoji are standard Unicode characters and you would have to somehow block specific parts of Unicode and not others.

Disabling then explicitly across the network is undesirable. Disabling them on specific sites might not be technically possible, or at least difficult.

Amusingly, I've only seen serious emoji abuse on Pets, and I wonder if it's a demographics thing. Considering they might be less technical users - educating them to why they can't use emoji in a post might be better. A simple block might drive them off.

Edits in rare situations are simple to handle.

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    "somehow block specific parts of Unicode" Eh, they're in well-defined ranges, and the software already has other text filters. In fact, just blocking U+1F600–U+1F64F would cover 95% of the annoyance. (There's also a couple of Character Properties for emoji.) The problem, as you said, is that then they can't be used in posts that actually ask about them.
    – jscs
    Commented Feb 3, 2019 at 22:24
  • Then comes the matter of how. I'm half certain we have temporary blocks of cjk characters for anti spam purposes - might work but would be frustrating for a new user. Commented Feb 4, 2019 at 1:06

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