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Gun Emoji – what it means and how to use it.

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Gun Emojis

Emoji is a whole world that influences many aspects of modern communication. The social side of things and ethicality is very strictly enforced by regulatory bodies.

Since the approval of Unicode, major companies such as Google and Apple have been creating their own version of the emoji offered. One of the reasons for this is to meet the standards accepted by society. So, for example, the image of a realistic gun was replaced with an image of a toy green water gun.

🔫 The Water Gun emoji was assigned the code U+1F52B, with which it was added to the Activities section of the Unicode 6.0 standard in 2010.

Meaning of the Gun Emoji

The replacement of the realistic black gun emoji in 2016 was demanded by activists in favor of stricter gun carry laws. Two years later, almost all tech companies spoke out for the first time in favor of introducing gun control. This came amid new US protests and school shootings. Microsoft and Google replaced the real gun emoji with a water gun emoji in 2018 – following Apple’s lead. Apple did this back in 2016.

So, today the only available emoji with the image of a weapon is a funny toy water pistol of bright green color. It is primarily associated with games and fun, and does not look like an emoticon denoting threat or violence at all. That was the point of replacing the black fighting gun with a brightly colored water gun.

Gun Emoji

The Use of the Gun Emoji

If with the old version of the emoji Pistol everything was clear without clarification (it symbolized aggression, danger and threat), then today Pistol looks and is used quite differently.

Now emoji gun is more often used in an entertaining context, as a toy for splashing water. Outdated emoji sets from Messenger, LG, HTC and Mozilla still show the battle pistol as they are no longer in active development.


As you can see, large global companies are quite successful in their mission to fight firearms and violence. By the example of such seemingly insignificant moments as replacing emoji, we see a decrease in aggression on the Internet and in personal correspondence. So it seems to us that this was a very good move. More positivity, less violence.

The bright green pistol is the only available version of the gun emoji in today’s Unicode set. And here it’s more associated with fun, goofing around, and good games.

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