Where does come from?
The blue book emoji was approved in 2010 under Unicode 6.0 and joins a number of other book and notebook-themed emoji, including the red, green, orange, and stack of books emoji.
It looks pretty uniform across platforms, though here’s a little emoji Easter egg for you: Apple’s blue book emoji displays “Vol. 3 by John Appleseed” in tiny script on its cover. The Johnny Appleseed allusion puns on the company name, Apple. The red, green, and orange books are Vols. 1, 2, and 4 by the prolific Mr. Appleseed, respectively.
The different book emoji are most used interchangeably by readers, writers, and scholars, with people maybe favoring one color over the other out of personal preference—if not just stringing all the colors together—or to coordinate with whatever content they are writing about.
The blue book emoji does stand out, though, because of some preexisting meanings of blue book in English.
The first is the blue book exam. You know, the ones that you always scrambled to buy at the campus bookstore on exam day because you forgot to get one ahead of time in spite of a billion reminders from your prof on Blackboard? In US high schools and colleges, these blue books are used for in-class tests and examinations requiring handwritten short-answer or essay responses.
— COSS Advising (@COSSadvising) December 13, 2017
Another fun fact: Thank Butler University for those blue books. They started using them in the 1920s, coloring them blue in line with their school colors.
Next is the Kelley Blue Book, an authoritative value guide for new and used cars in the US going back to the 1920s. (The 1920s really had a thing for blue-colored books, huh?)
✨🏀March Madness Sales Event Starts TODAY!!!! Everything priced below Kelly Blue Book📘 for EZ Financing! https://t.co/jZI3dM5Eun#marchmadnesssalesevent #slamdunkdeals #scorehugesavings pic.twitter.com/lqcgQ5yHav
— 4-H Auto Sales, LLC (@4HAutoSalesLLC) March 2, 2018
Finally—and we include this only because we know you come to Dictionary.com for complete and utter thoroughness—an older and less common blue book is a registry of important persons, often government officials. The blue book emoji sees some very occasional use this way.
— Chandler R. Adkins (@CReeves_6) April 13, 2018
Who uses ?
The blue book emoji appears most often on social media. It is also used to enhance titles on YouTube or other social-platform headlines related to books, reading, and academics.
As with any emoji, the blue book emoji can appear on its own or with a host of others, often with other colored book emoji to add a visual pop. The emoji is usually placed at the end of a sentence, unless it substitutes the word book.
One of the leading uses of the blue book emoji is to talk about books and reading, especially a love of them and when the actual book someone is reading is blue.
DOUGLASS…The Story Of An
American Slave”.He Was Heroic Man Of Mythic Proportions,in unimaginable time. At End Of 📘I Couldn’t Help But Ask Myself,”How Could We Have Been SO Barbaric,With NO Feelings,NO Empathy⁉️
We Are Still Without Equality.
— Cher (@cher) May 2, 2018
And, World Book Day on April 23rd sees many uses of the blue book emoji to celebrate all things reading.
— Lil’ Ye (@lil_ye) April 23, 2018
Shelfies, like a selfie but of someone’s bookshelf, are often posted on social media with the blue book emoji.
Forget selfies. Send me your shelfies!
— William Scott (@TheCuredRebirth) May 2, 2018
Outside of blue book exams, the emoji can mark academics and learning more generally.
Help a new coder out! #100DaysOfCode
What was your learning strategy when you were an absolute beginner? 🐢
Was it a grind or did you employ tricks to make the process more efficient? 🐦
Do you have any learning tips? 📘📙
— Mikoto (@miko_uwu) April 27, 2018
Occasionally and in line with its Kelley Blue Book uses, people use the blue book emoji when discussing sales, prices, and “a good deal,” such as this posting on Depop: 📘DISTRESSED DRESS📘vintage #50s📘“Parkland of Dallas” 📘over-dyed cotton with wax resist polka dots📘rhinestones on bodice📘some fraying and discoloration due to age 📘flat measurements〰chest:17″/waist:14″/hips:free👛$20+shipping💋
On Instagram, some people tag the blue book emoji ( #📘) in pictures of their bookshelves or themselves reading, often coordinated with decor, clothing, or other objects that are blue or look good with blue.