Where does come from?
It seems a natural fit for the Unicode consortium (emoji gatekeepers, for the most part) to embrace American Sign Language signals. The love-you gesture or I love you hand sign emoji was approved for Unicode 10.0 in 2017 and added to Emoji 5.0 in 2017.
It came about after a petition by two people, one being Western Oregon University professor C.M. Hall. In 2015, Hall said, “The deaf community being one that is incredibly marginalized and pathologized … When we insert gestures (in emoji), we are already communicating visually, so why not include the most recognized gesture in ASL? I see it as such a simple, yet profound benchmark of dignity.”
Perhaps, surprisingly to some, the love-you gesture emoji is commonly used in reference to rock music, due to its similarity to its rock’n’roll cousin, the sign of the horns or rock on emoji. The love-you emoji shows the thumb extended, as it is in American Sign Language, while the sign of the horns emoji depicts the thumb tucked into the hand.
They’re so similar that the rock star Gene Simmons of the band KISS attempted to trademark this version, the love-you gesture emoji, as his own take on the rock on emoji. He withdrew his application, mostly due to widespread criticism from other musicians. Maybe he also withdrew it when he realized it was the wrong symbol …
Who uses ?
Browsing social media, you may be struck by the range of uses for the the love-you gesture emoji. It’s used to express affection or intense approval for someone or something, romantic love, and even, yes, a kind of “rock on!” enthusiasm where they could use the more rock’n’roll emoji, the sign of the horns.
Maybe they choose the love-you gesture for the extra positivity, right?
date ur best friend, 10/10 recommend!¡!¡🤟🏼❤️ pic.twitter.com/Tk3rAZDXGL
— stokes🐝🌼✨🍯 (@stokleyann) October 25, 2018
— wrestling4life🔥🤟🏼❤️ (@zakzouhari) October 26, 2018
last football game with my favorite 🤟🏼 pic.twitter.com/G483HbyGWc
— bella🤟🏻 (@isabellajortiz) October 26, 2018
Ain't no such thing as a love that's better then yours
— Dave🍻🍁🤟🏼 (@stilesdavid43) October 26, 2018
— Christian Cruz (@98CactusJack) October 25, 2018
This weekend should be good 🤟🏼🍻
— isabel 🌙 (@isabelq08) October 26, 2018
I finally got another tattoo today 😁🤟🏼 pic.twitter.com/zQLY5MmecL
— maddy🌻🕸 (@madbabes_) October 23, 2018
Who says emojis don’t do a great job of conveying emotion?
boy you got me trippin
clumsy cause i’m falling in
— maria🌸 (@mariamccomishh) October 26, 2018