I’m a latecomer to emojis. Early emojis—emoticons—I found especially hard. I was not ok with suggesting human emotion with dots and dashes. It didn’t communicate anything real, no filled-out sadness or anger or shock or surprise. What it did communicate felt empty and cheesy and not like myself, so I stayed away. I also stayed away when illustrated emojis came along. They were better, but still fell short, even when it came to non-face-based emojis like hearts and flowers. So I said thank you, but no thank you, emojis.
But when Bitmoji came along, that felt better. Bitmojis looked kind of like me and dressed in outfits I’d really wear and they did dynamic things. Sending a Bitmoji-me with my hand on my hip and wearing a dead-face next to an hourglass with the text “I’m waiting” felt real. I do that in real life. I’ll text “I’m waiting” Bitmoji-me to anyone, no problem.
Point being, I only send illustrated representations of emotion when I connect with them, when they feel authentic. Or, on the other hand, if I’ve communicated with the person I’m sending a text to that I hate emojis but if they’re cool with it, I’ll do my best to be cool with it for their sake, I suppose. It’s a bilateral agreement and does not extend beyond that person.
Then, there’s this: What if you’re a bro? What emoji do you identify with? You probably don’t, certainly not when it comes to stuff like face-kissing-a-small-red-heart emoji, and maybe not even when it comes to Bitmojis, because they won’t let you express your full bro-ness—no gelled, spiked hair, or backwards cap, or (more to the point) sayings that all the best bros use, like “Noice” and “Crush it!!!” and “Brotein Shake” and “IPAs Rule, Bro.” And what about bro objects? Kegs and grills and biceps and dumbbells and even piles of crap? You don’t have those either. Finally, you certainly don’t have emojis related to doing it, in the way you talk and think about it. Nope, none of it.
But guess what? Now you do; with Bromoji it can all be yours.
Bromoji, released today, is a Williamsburg-based app from four males who (unconfirmed) may or may not be bros, but based on their founding story, probably are. One day on a chairlift in Vermont, one of them said out loud, why are there no emoji apps for dudes? Quickly, all four realize that, their talents combined (artist, product manager and CFA holder, marketer, and interaction/industrial designer), they could go ahead and make their own. And that’s exactly what they did.
As Liam Kehoe, Bromoji co-founder points out, Bromoji is great even if you are not a bro, because the whole world is divided in two camps: Bros or Bro-haters, and each group feels very passionately about their position. Either would enjoy using it due to their corresponding love or hate.
Falling more in the bro-hater camp myself, and having just now delighted in sending a mug of beer followed by a colon and the number 30 to my friend Chris using Bromoji, I can tell you that Liam and his co-founders Dan, Pete, and Martin are onto something good. With my Bromoji text I communicated activity-specific zeal and made a mild joke in response to a pointed question. Namely, I told the truth, connected with my Bromoji, and had fun at the same time. What else could I hope to get out of any form of communication? Nothing! Bromoji gave this to me, and it can give it to you, too, Bro or no.