THE ART OF EMOJIOLOGY
Emojis are the new way of communicating emotion through text in the twenty-first century. This is thanks to Shigetaka Kurita who believed that digital communication deprived human beings of the ability to communicate emotion. He decided to solve this problem by creating emojis. In Japanese, the word “E” means “picture” and “moji” means “character”.
Today, we can use these emojis through texting and social media. If you don’t know how to use emojis in your everyday texting or social media conversations, have no fear because I am here to save the day. All you have to do is follow these four beginner steps.
Step 1: LEARN PROPER EMOJI SENTENCE STRUCTURE
For the most part, emojis act like punctuation, providing cues about how to understand the words that came before them. One trick that might help is to think of emojis as exclamation points, questions marks, or periods. To that end, emojis should typically come at the end of a sentence or thought.
There are exceptions to this rule, of course. If there are popular phrases that are universally understood, then you can definitely let the emojis stand alone or before the end of the sentence.
Step 2: LEARN EMOJI TERMINOLOGY
This is perhaps the most important step in learning how to communicate with emojis. Do you know the saying “a picture is worth a thousand words”? The same saying applies to emojis.
Emojis have many different meanings. They can have literal meanings or be used as a stand-in for a body part, an emotion that doesn’t have an emoji yet, etc. For example, let’s discuss the eggplant 🍆 emoji. This emoji can be used to literally signify an eggplant. However, (*sigh*) millennials have started using the eggplant as a sexual body part. Now do you see what I mean when I said that emojis can have multiple meanings?
Since emojis are derived from Japanese culture some of the meaning is lost in translation. Below are some emojis that were given different meanings by millennials.
💁 This woman holding a hand up says, “look how fabulous I am,” to millennials. However, it is actually an information desk person and is supposed to say, “how may I help you?”.
🙇 This emoji is used by millennials to signify thinking to much, stress, etc. In reality, this emoji is a bow, a sign of respect.
Step 3: DON’T BE AFRAID TO LOOK UP EMOJI MEANINGS
If you have trouble deciphering what an emoji means or how to use an emoji, don’t be afraid to consult the almighty Emojipedia. Yes, there is such a thing as an encyclopedia for emojis. It’s the closest thing to an official emoji reference guide we have to date. You can look up names or get a sneak peek at emojis that may appear on your phone in the future.
Step 4: HAVE FUN!
Don’t forget to have fun with emojis by practicing and texting or messaging your friends on social media. You can always make your own emoji meaning or create an emoji phrase. Don’t be afraid to experiment and try new emojis out.