Icons for Everything: Noun Project’s Updated Content Moderation Policy

Noun Project was founded in 2011 with a mission to build a global visual language to unite the world — a language that allows quick and easy communication no matter who you are or where you are. Over the last decade, Noun Project has flourished and is used and loved by millions of people. More than three million icons later, we are so proud of what our global community has built together.

As we grow, it’s important to continue surfacing the best, most diverse collection of icons ever for our users. With that in mind, we are updating our content moderation process to ensure only the highest quality content is available on our platform.

Higher Standards for Subject Matter and Design Quality

From the very beginning, Noun Project has been committed to focusing on quality over quantity. Each icon found on Noun Project has made it through a rigorous content moderation process, ensuring that every icon in our collection adheres to strict quality standards.

As we’ve grown, we’ve become more discerning about the material that makes it into our collection. A few years ago, we were accepting 70% of all content submitted to Noun Project. Now, that acceptance rate is less than 50%. We have tightened our requirements for accepting icons into our collection based on several factors including subject matter, design quality, and accuracy of accompanying tags.

Subject Matter We’re Prioritizing

First, it is more important than ever that we champion the creation of icons that push forward a more equal and accurate representation of our society. We’re looking for content that accurately and respectfully depicts communities that have traditionally been underrepresented or misrepresented.

Second, priority will be given to underexplored content, such as depictions of new technologies, new memes, current events, and unique material that does not already exist in our collection.

Design Quality and Tag Accuracy

We remain committed to quality and consistency in our manual review process. Moving forward, we will hold content to an even higher standard for aesthetic and technical quality, as well as accuracy and relevancy of accompanying tags.

What these Changes Mean for Creators:

  • Icons depicting material that is already well-represented on Noun Project may no longer be accepted. Examples include icons of arrows, houses, checkmarks, cogs, shapes, currencies, etc.
  • Icons tagged with inaccurate or irrelevant terms will be denied
  • For large batch submissions, submissions that have vast, repeating, or multiple issues may be denied as a whole

To guide and support our Creators through these changes, we will release a series of detailed design guidelines to inform your designs and increase your rate of success. We will also provide tips and suggestions on how to create new content, as well as what types of content we are looking for. Keep an eye out for these and more to come!


Interested in joining Noun Project’s Creator Community? Check out our Creator’s Handbook for everything you need to get started.