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New York's MoMA Acquires Original Set of Emojis

1477501871_MOMA Emojis
Photographer: Elghanayan, Shahrzad
Updated on

New York (AP) -- Back in the day, before cars could drive themselves and phones could send stickers and animations, a Japanese phone company released a set of 176 emojis.

The year was 1999 and the tiny 12-by-12 pixel designs — smiley faces, hearts of the intact and broken variety, cats, and so on — were mainly popular in Japan. In 2010, Unicode Consortium, which now controls emoji standards, translated the emoji into the Unicode standard, which means that a person in France, for example, can send an emoji to a person in the U.S. and it will look the same, no matter what brand of phone or operating system they use.