The 🌎 Needs a Drone Emoji

July 17, 2020

Here’s What We’re Doing About It.

This March, DroneUp submitted our proposal to the Unicode Consortium Emoji Subcommittee for the addition of a drone emoji to the Emoji 14 update. Since then, we’ve been rallying support for our cause across social media by promoting #DroneEmoji and asking drone enthusiasts to show their support by signing our petition. The more signatures we have, the clearer it will be that drones have a large following and are here to stay.

This is not DroneUp’s emoji. While we share images with our logo on company channels, the official drone emoji proposal is for a quadcopter drone without any logos or brands. Our intention is to create a symbol that universally represents and serves the drone industry on digital platforms globally. The world needs a drone emoji to drive exposure and public acceptance in a language that is universal, and DroneUp is leading the charge.

Since announcing the initiative, the #DroneEmoji story has been shared across the industry by the likes of DroneLife, The Drone Girl, Commercial UAV News, and more. Beyond the drone industry, people are taking note of the drone emoji on an international level; DroneUp was recently interviewed about our emoji proposal for a BBC radio documentary that will air in the near future. Stay tuned!

Following our efforts, we received a decision from the Unicode Consortium. We were informed that the Drone Emoji proposal had been denied by the Emoji Subcommittee. Along with their decision, the committee offered this justification for their assessment:

“The committee feels this is quite new technology and may not have longevity; it is too early to know.”

This is not the first time that the drone industry has received this type of skepticism. Fighting the stigma that drones are too new to justify the investment and may not have staying power is something that members of this industry combat daily. That is why DroneUp is pushing back on this decision.

After receiving Unicode’s decision on the drone emoji, we vowed to roll up our sleeves and continue to reapply with additional evidence of the longevity of drone technology. We will continue this crusade until our emoji dreams become a reality, because if these 💾📟📠📇 deserve to be emoji, so does a drone.

Our revised proposal has been resubmitted to the committee with new evidence of the rich history and bright future of drones. For example, did you know that the first quadcopter, The Bréguet-Richet Gyroplane No. 1, took flight in 1907? Or that the drone market is projected to grow at a rate of 23.37% a year between now and 2026? It is our hope that the additional pages of new evidence added to the drone emoji proposal will sway the opinions of the subcommittee as the proposal goes through the Unicode Consortium’s rigorous process for emojification again.

DroneUp took on this initiative to show the world that drones are here to stay, and we intend to see that through. We want to champion the drone industry on all fronts, and while an emoji may not fix every problem the industry faces, it is a step in the right direction toward improving public perception of drones and establishing lasting legitimacy for the industry. 

Thank you to everyone who has signed our petition and continues to follow our #DroneEmoji initiative. As DroneUp continues this effort, we encourage the drone industry to share in the fun by signing the petition for our community and using #DroneEmoji on social media.