Tell Us About Your Cross-Platform Emoji Miscommunication

Half the time I send an emoticon I have no idea what the person on the other end is actually seeing. Which may seem pretty trivial, but is not entirely trivial! A lot of care goes into crafting a chat or text so as to relay tone and intention without body language. The emoji is real. And out of control.

Who knows what's lost in translation as that combination of symbols travels from iOS to Android, between different chat clients and emoji apps. Today, for example, my coworker sent what looked like a little yellow angel emoji with a halo from her Adium chat. To me, it looked like this: (A)

What? Confusing can easily turn into awkward, insulting. Sending gender-free blobby faces kissing from a Moto-X turns into a boy and girl kissing on the Samsung Galaxy. Texting a picture of a girl in a red dress from an iPhone shows up as a guy dancing on an Android.


What about you? What has been lost in translation due to inconsistent emoji?

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Annalee Newitz

This is the worst. I send an emoji of two gender-free cartoon faces kissing to my lady friend, using Kit Kat on the Moto-X. It shows up on her Samsung piece of crap as a boy and girl kissing. Why are you trying to heteronormize me, Samsung-wrapped Android?