One of the most fun features of running your own Mastodon server is the ability to add custom emoji. All members of your server can use them, and they will be visible in your member’s posts that federate to other servers. You can also clone custom emoji from other servers, or block them if you see something unsuitable.
To access emoji settings, log into your server’s website with your administrator’s account, then go to Preferences > Administration > Custom emoji.
When you first log in, you will see a long list of all the custom emoji visible to your server, including your own and those of all the servers you federate with. To show just your own click the Local tab at the top, to show just those on other servers click Remote.
Adding your own custom emoji
Custom emoji can be PNG or GIF files up to 50kb in size, and can be still or animated. They can also contain transparent backgrounds. (If you want to create your own from scratch, there’s a useful guide by Laura Kalbag here ⧉.)
To add your own custom emoji:
- Log in with your admin account on your server’s website
- Go to Preferences > Administration > Custom Emojis
- Click the Upload button in the top right corner
- Add a shortcode, which is a word or words which describes what the emoji looks like. If you use several words, write them as CamelCase or with underscores separating them. Shortcodes are really important as they let blind people hear emoji through screen reader apps.
- Browse for the image file and click the Upload button at the bottom
Cloning emoji from other servers
To clone an emoji from another server, tick the box next to it on the custom emoji admin list, and click Copy. If you’re looking for a particular emoji on a long list, use its shortcode in the search box.
Blocking emoji from other servers
To block an emoji from another server, for example if it is offensive, tick the box next to it on the emoji admin list and click Disable or Delete.