Share icon

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A share icon is a user interface icon intended to convey to the user a button for performing a share action. Content platforms such as YouTube often include a share icon so that users can forward the content onto social media platforms or embed videos into their websites, thus increasing its view count.

Share Icon[edit]

Share Icon

WordPress developer Alex King[1] created the original Share Icon in 2006. ShareThis acquired the rights to this icon a year later, and eventually licensed it under four licenses: the share-alike GPL and LGPL, and the permissive BSD license and Creative Commons Attribution 2.5.[2][3] ShareThis produces widgets for accessing social networking services from a single pop-up menu. This icon is trademarked and was cause for controversy due to it being subject to legal take-down[4] notices despite its license.

Open Share Icon[edit]

Open Share Icon

The Open Share Icon (or Shareaholic icon)[5] is designed to help users easily identify shareable content. The icon aims to convey the act of sharing visually by representing one hand passing an object to another hand, while also representing an eye meaning "look at this." The icon was designed by the company Shareaholic, and made available under a Creative Commons share-alike license, with the restriction that "clear attribution and a hyperlink back to this page in a prominent location".[5]

The Open Share Icon is supported by Ken Rossi (creator of the widely used OPML icons) and Bruce McKenzie (GeoTag icons),[5] and is used by hundreds of websites and applications,[citation needed] including SmugMug,[6] the Shareaholic Firefox addon,[7] Wikia, NetworkWorld, Weather Underground, Princeton University. It is also proposed for use in the Mozilla Add-ons Directory.[8]

Rightward arrow icon[edit]

The "upward and right" arrow share icon used on Facebook.

Facebook uses a share icon showing an arrow pointing up and then right.

The "share" button on Facebook covers several ways of sending the content with optional privacy settings to others. The "shares" button can generate more non-fans, and can result in fewer fans on a public Facebook page as a “brake effect of viral reach". The algorithmic content ranking on Facebook might decrease the fan reach in response to the notable increase in nonfan reach. Therefore, the "share" button may have a higher impact on content ranking than the previous "page like" button.[9]

YouTube uses a similar icon.

Upward arrow icon[edit]

Apple's products use an icon showing a box with an upward arrow.[10] This icon is used on several Apple products:

The "upward arrow" share icon is used on Twitter.

Twitter shows a similar icon next to each tweet. This opens a menu with three options: Send via Direct Message, Add Tweet to Bookmarks, or Copy link to Tweet.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Share Icon". Retrieved September 29, 2015.
  2. ^ "Share Icon Project – An icon to represent 'sharing': posting to social sites, sending by e-mail, etc". Retrieved August 29, 2012.
  3. ^ "Share Icon Project – An icon to represent 'sharing': posting to social sites, sending by e-mail, etc". via Internet Archive. Archived from the original on July 3, 2007. Retrieved July 3, 2007.
  4. ^ "Font Awesome". GitHub. Retrieved March 29, 2013.
  5. ^ a b c "Home of the Open Share Icon and Share Buttons". Retrieved February 7, 2014.
  6. ^ " Traffic Profile". Retrieved May 14, 2009.
  7. ^ "Mozilla Add-ons Directory". Retrieved May 14, 2009.
  8. ^ "Mozilla Bug #504711". Retrieved January 7, 2010.
  9. ^ Pócs, Dávid; Adamovits, Otília; Watti, Jezdancher; Kovács, Róbert; Kelemen, Oguz (June 21, 2021). "Facebook Users' Interactions, Organic Reach, and Engagement in a Smoking Cessation Intervention: Content Analysis". Journal of Medical Internet Research. 23 (6): e27853. doi:10.2196/27853. ISSN 1438-8871. PMC 8277334. PMID 34152280.
  10. ^ "iWork – News – Using On Your iPad". Apple. April 30, 2010. Archived from the original on October 6, 2011. Retrieved August 29, 2012.