I’ve never really been a big emoji person. Occasionally I’d throw one in a text here or there, but never in a public manner. However, if you have seen anything on this weblog in the last couple of weeks, you would have seen tons and tons of emoji. This is largely due to the micro.blog community. Both the emojitags used for discovery, as well as the people in the community, have inspired me and shown me countless ways to use them. A big example of this is @Burk and his run logs. He also keeps a tagmoji discover directory here. @smokey has also done a great job using them in weekly micro.blog summaries. Lastly, @grayareas delightfully uses emoji across posts, links, and replies throughout the micro.blog community.
For the life of my weblog (and it’s various names and iterations), I actively avoided emoji. Instead, I would use various icons for similar purposes, such as these: ► ➲ ✖︎ ❏ ⌯. These are pretty abstract compared to emojis. You would never know what they represent without actually seeing a few of those specific posts. Emoji do a much better job at visually telling you what they are actually being used for.
Today on this weblog, pretty much every post title has an emoji being used to give a quick identifier of what is behind the link. The one exception being ✖︎, which denotes actual blog posts. It represents the name of this blog, The Independent Variable, and also I think it just looks better than the emoji x (✖️). Along with titles, I have started completely reworking the tag system with my Blot blog. With every new post, my tags are mostly emoji1, with the occasional text tag where I haven’t been able to settle on something I really like. I’ve also started a slow process of going back through my old tags, converting them to emojis to provide consistently and an actual usefulness to the tags page as a whole.
Both micro.blog and blot have me blogging way more, and being more active than anytime in the past. Emoji are just one small piece contributing to it.