Is it possible to disable emojis in post titles❓

Posts like this have the title rendered as

Try_lock on futures::lock::Mutex outside of async?

This is unquestionably not what is desired. I have seen this happen with :lock: and :de: (in serde::de::Error on this forum.

Is there a setting that disables emojis in post titles, even if it's only for text between backticks? I am aware that both IRLO and URLO are hosted instances such that there is not complete control over behavior like this.


Well, that post title was a bit ridiculous looking. I've taken the liberty to “fix” it by inserting some form of zero width space.

I do recall having seen some instance of :de⁠: becoming :de: in the past as well.


It’s possible to use max emojis in title to disable it (set it to zero). But that would give an error message, not just avoid processing like we want.

Turning off "enable emoji" completely seems to do the trick, though at what cost? :sadface:


Zero width space is an interesting idea that I'll keep in mind (given that I have edit abilities as well).

While emojis aren't used a ton on these forums, it seems a bit overkill to disable them entirely. After a quick search on, it appears as though this has (effectively) been requested a number of times. Probably the most relevant thread would be this one that suggests disabling shortcodes when "max emojis in title" is zero (which should be fine for our purposes).

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I'm going to sound like a killjoy : I think graphic emojis aren't really "worth it" on a technical forum, though that's only my opinion.

And as a sidenote, I've always preferred the kaomojis like :) or ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. But the first one is often automatically translated to an (ugly) drawing different for everyone and every platform, and the second risks losing its right arm to escaping.

Though all in all, I think that's a non-issue. We can edit titles if it happens, and if people use code formatting correctly it shouldn't happen in post bodies.


Anecdotally I don't see emojis used much anyways. Obviously I included it in the title of this post satirically, but real-world usage would seem uncommon. Emoji literals would still be allowed (I think?); it would just be the shortcode that wouldn't if it were turned off.

Maybe it's worthwhile. I'd personally like to see actual data on frequency of use (and frequency of errors) before hitting the killswitch altogether.

Indeed, literal emoji still work: 🦒


AFAICT, literal emoji will result in literal emoji in the displayed post (i.e. the HTML), whereas the discourse-emoji generate images with URLs such as The latter has way better support on all browsers, and everyone sees the same colorful rendering of the emoji. I, too, think that completely disabling emoji everywhere is overkill and with enough mods and regulars knowing about how to fix things with zero-width-space, the title problem is not much of a problem either.

With the switch as-is I (think I) cannot edit my post further up without destroying the emoji and there’s no way (that I know of) of recreating it manually the same way it is right now. I probably can’t even quote it anymore… let’s try:


As far as I can tell, most longer threads (I’ve looked at about the 5 more recent ones now, threads with more than 10 comments) contain some uses of emoji. I’ve also occasionaly used emoji myself (though admitted not very often at all.) Here’s even one recent example use of literal emoji

from after the discourse ones have been disabled, and it looks like @Yandros has not really used any literal ones in the past.

I’m personally in favor of re-enabling discourse emoji. However, for a slightly more systematic approach to this decision, anyone feel free to participate in this poll, no matter if you agree or disagree.

  • Keep discourse emoji disabled (avoids accidents in titles)
  • Re-enable discourse emoji (easier to use, better emoji rendering than natives ones)

0 voters

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fwiw I'm putting re-enable largely because of the zero-width space hack. Regulars don't really edit a ton, but it seems more than reasonable to edit for this reason. The issue doesn't come up too much, so the effort shouldn't be much.

I'd prefer there be a proper fix that disables it only in titles, but that is of minimal priority for Discourse. I'm not familiar in the slightest with Discourse's code structure, otherwise I'd look at sending a PR myself.

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Never heard that term before.
Emoticon is the term I know, from waaaaay back before emojis existed.


I'm also voting for re-enabling for the same reasons and that it seems a bit exclusionary to not have them ? People who don't use them can just not use them. And I think there's whole lot of people just used to using emojis in their "written speech".

Thanks @steffahn for mentioning my posts, despite how anecdotal one single user may be :sweat_smile‎: 😅.

I'll still say the following:

  • I almost always use URLO (and IRLO) on a laptop; so I don't have access to mobile phone integrated emoji keyboard;

  • That being said, one of my most used laptops runs on macOS, and thus I have access to the very ergonomic shortcut of Control + Command + Space Bar to get access to an on-screen emoji keyboard (spelling the shortcut out loud for those not knowing it). This is, by the way, what I have been using since the "named shortcuts" have been disabled. It's not that inconvenient, so if I were to always be on such a configuration, I could live with them being disabled (but not everybody is necessarily acquainted with such shortcuts).

  • However, I also often use a Windows environment, for which I suppose there is an emoji keyboard shortcut as well, but haven't bothered searching for it (on the rare occasions I really wanted an emoji I've just used emojipedia; in the other situations the "named shortcuts" have allowed me to use emojis unhindered), and I sometimes use different Linux distros, so, all in all, an ergonomic emoji keyboard is not necessarily available, and one ends up having to use emojipedia or some other equivalent website; which I think we can all agree is less ergonomic than the "named shortcuts" on Discourse (especially since other services, such as Discord, Slack, Github, do also feature them (albeit with potentially different names for fun and profit 😅)).

  • Finally, there is also the question of "are emojis needed"? Humanity has been able to communicate and teach with only the written word, and thus without emojis, for several millenia.

    That being said, most of the communication has been oral, and an "important"1 amount of the communication goes through non-verbal cues. Moreover, I'd even say that the lack of such cues when communicating in a written fashion may have caused misunderstandings, not necessarily w.r.t. the "factual" contents of the message, but rather regarding its underlying intent / the "manners" / tone around them.

    • I like to take the example of full stops: somebody answering


      does not convey the same as somebody saying:


      Or, with emojis:

      Sure 😄

    This last point (heh) is especially important in two situations:

    • Non-native speakers may not use the language words and constructs with enough "accuracy" to convey the proper underlying tone. In that regard, emojis are quite (more) universal (modulo cultural differences);

    • Beginners, or more generally, people that come to learn, are kind of exposing themselves: their "ignorance" puts them on the backfoot. I feel it is important to be in a comforting and thus "safe" environment to learn, to be more willing to listen for advice; otherwise people can become defensive, and the whole constructive discussion can degenerate.

    And it turns out that this forum finds itself fitting those two scenarios! That's why I think emojis may be more important than their innocent or even "childish" initial look may suggest, and so any ergonomic improvement to bring them forward ought to be favored, imho 🙂

1 Feel free to disregard this subjective quantifier, I don't have enough objective knowledge on this topic to support it, but I've heard these ideas here and there often enough for them to be plausibly true. But of course I'd still welcome somebody providing actual facts / research on the topic.


Note: I've re-enabled Discourse emojis since it seems like we have workarounds for the main problems they cause, and also so that people can experiment with other workarounds/bugs/features.