Yesterday was Halloween, and I’ve decided that if I were to dress up (which unfortunately, did not), I would dress up as an emotiCON (wo)MAN! At first, I was just messing around with the words (since I am obsessed with words and emoticons..and overuse emoticons religiously) …emotiCON…HA! As in con-man…EmotiCON MAN! But, I am not a man, so it is therefore crucial, I say, that the (wo) be included in this little ditty. So, the whole idea that emoticons could POSSIBLY be used to “con” someone (as in swindle, manipulate or cajole) is highly likely. Therefore, I have taken it upon myself to educate all innocent emailers throughout the land, (or the two people who read this) about the use and MIS-use of emotiCONS!
*DISCLAIMER* this education is not from an accredited institution. However, course attendees will receive a congratulatory certificate (suitable for framing) upon completion of the course.
I. Breif History of Emoticons
II. Use and Misuse of emoticons
A. The Smiley Face
- Proper Use of the Smiley Face
- Misuse of the Smiley Face
B. The Poo
- Proper use of The Poo
- Misuse of The Poo
III. Misc. Emoticons, Questions and Comments
Brief History of the Emoticon
*NOTE* Okay, I am not even going to mess around here. I got all the following information from Wikipedia. I didn’t even bother to rewrite it in my own words…just cut and paste. Still, I hope you will find this information interesting and pertinent to the discussion at hand.
Emoticons are often used to alert a responder to the tenor or temper of a statement, and can change and improve interpretation of plain text. The word is aportmanteau word of the English words emotion and icon. In web forums, instant messengers and online games, text emoticons are often automatically replaced with small corresponding images, which came to be called emoticons as well. Emoticons for a smiley face
:-) and sad face
:-( appear in the first documented use in digital form.
The use of emoticons can be traced back to the 19th century, and they were commonly used in casual and humorous writing. They are used mainly in text messages and emails. Digital forms of emoticons on the Internet were included in a proposal by Scott Fahlman of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in a message on 19 September 1982.
The National Telegraphic Review and Operators Guide in April 1857 documented the use of the number 73 in Morse code to express “love and kisses” (later reduced to the more formal “best regards”). Dodge’s Manual in 1908 documented the reintroduction of “love and kisses” as the number 88. Gajadhar and Green comment that both Morse code abbreviations are more succinct than modern abbreviations such as LOL.
*END of what could TECHnically be considered plagiarism* Holy crap I need help
The Use and Misuse of The Smiley Face
The smiley face —-> 🙂 is generally used to convey a tone of warm, friendly, and happy feelings in a form of communication (email or text) that may otherwise be dull or lifeless. Proper use of the smiley face can evoke feelings of the warm fuzzies. See figure 1a.
Note the genuine pleasantry conveyed by the author in figure 1a. The smiley face lets the reader know that the author intends to convey a genuine appreciation, rather than a sarcastic “Thanks a lot” or something of the sort.
However, not every use of the smiley face expresses such pleasantries. Over-use of the smiley face can be down right annoying. See figure 1b.
I have to admit, I feel slightly inclined to punch this author in the throat…BUT, I am extremely guilty of overusing the smiley face,(and I am the author) so that could be a problem… eeeek
There is another significant misuse of the smiley…the smiley in the following example demonstrates the authors attempt to swindle and or cajole the recipient. See figure 1c.
The emotiCON MAN! This author does not REALLY intend to suggest genuine pleasantries, he (okay…the “he” thing is just an assumption) is a slimy sleeze- ball. That’s all I have to say about that.
The next example demonstrates a whole new type of emoticon…this is next level physical expression/ body language… The Poo.
The Use and Misuse of The Poo
(*or “Poop” if you prefer to use words that sound the same going forward or backward)
Inserting a nice pile of poo into your email allows you to get your message across without the use of verbal vulgarities, thus making your email family friendly. See figure 2a.
However, the use of TOO MANY Poo’s (or, *Poop’s (see note above) ) can become vulgar in and of itself. No one wants to sift through an email covered in fecal matter. That’s just gross. See figure 2b.
Note the the unyielding urge to wash your hands (and check your surroundings for flies) after reading something like that. It is imperative to understand the use and misuse of emoticons, both in reading and writing emails (or, any other type of technological expression).
Questions and Comments section
CONGRATULATIONS! You are now an emotiCON (wo)MAN!