Emojicon Unicode symbols are not supported in commit status context (REST API). What else?


Our customer has reported a peculiar issue with reporting commit statuses from TeamCity to GitHub: if he used an emoji Unicode symbols withing the TeamCity build configuration name (that translates into “context” field when the build status is published to GitHub), GitHub rejects such a request, returning HTTP error 422 Unprocessable Entity. 

I recon GitHub doesn’t like emojis. We have tested it with a number of other character sets, such as Kanji, Cyrillic, Hebrew and Arabic scripts, even Indian rupee sign (the latter was introduced in Unicode 6.0 together with the first emojis), and GitHub accepts all of that. 

Now the questions are:

  1. Is such an arrangement intentional?
  2. And if so, is there any specification of what constitutes an acceptable character set for the “context” field there?


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GitHub allows emoji in a number of areas, mostly in descriptions, comments, or other user-writable text fields. Since the context field is designed to be compared between multiple status records to show the full set of status checks, it probably wasn’t ever tested to ensure that emoji are accepted in that field. No, there isn’t a specification of what characters are or are not accepted in that field (or any specific field in the GitHub API to my knowledge).

I just ran into this issue while trying to post a comment (just :angry:) in a gist:

2019-04-28 16_56_51-test.js.png

Ran into status checks with CircleCI job names that included emoji and were not appearing as status checks

Hi, I can confirm this. See 422 from touch · Issue #28 · unicode-org/jira-github-pr-check · GitHub

Yes, ironically it was an Accordion emoji 🪗 and on Unicode’s repository.

Repositories - GitHub Docs doesn’t actually document the 422 status return, nor does it document the range of allowable text.