Actually, we need to talk about a lot more than emojis, so now that you’re here.
I need you to do something for me first, think about what a friend is to you. Likely you have an idea, your own personal definition that varies from person to person.
Now I want you to open your Facebook page, how many friends do you have?
One of the things I find most interesting about social media is that it has redefined what a friend is.
Now a friend is someone that you met, someone sent a friend request and you accepted.
Maybe you never spoke to that person again. Maybe you talk every day; only one of these is a friend.
And it’s not that simple.
Social media has not just redefined friendship, it redefines boundaries, it redefines manners and appropriate behavior. It’s changing how we find jobs, intimate relationships and how we communicate.
Ever get hit on by a random person on Facebook? I have.
And while we are on the subject, if you are trawling Facebook hitting on random people, Tinder is the social media platform you are looking for.
This is where emojis come in.
I love emojis. I love the unicorn emoji 🦄, though I never have any use for it. I love the avocado emoji 🥑, it’s just so cute and I don’t know why.
I read about the period emoji a few weeks ago and I thought it was a really cool way of saying our culture accepts this thing that happens in your body and nobody need feel ashamed of it.
You have probably heard of emojis referred to as part of language.
There are more than 1000 emojis and most people use them to convey an emotion. Some people use them in place of words.
All language depends on a shared meaning. So words are symbols as emojis are, but in order to use them to communicate, the person sending the message and the person receiving the message must know what it means
There’s nothing wrong with using emojis to communicate , but as with words, it is only respectful to be mindful of which ones you use and with who.
If you don’t the message sent and the message received don’t match.
For instance, using a kissing emoji 😘 when speaking to an acquaintance is never okay, right?
What about a friend? Maybe, depends on the friend, right?
Maybe it’s okay in private but not on public comment?
This is because most people have an idea of what the kissing emoji means, we share roughly the meaning because we know what kissing is and we know why and with whom we do it.
But do we always think of emojis as similar to words or representations of concepts?
Is an emoji just an emoji?
This is important because social media is redefining how we behave. It’s changing how we feel we should behave.
Not everyone is okay with that change and not everyone feels okay to say so.
Think of it this way, would you say to someone you hardly know or are not close with, that you want to kiss them.
That might make them really uncomfortable.
Is that the message you intended to send?
If not why would you use the kissing emoji?
If somebody used an emoji that conveyed a message you were uncomfortable with, would you feel comfortable saying it to them?
Mostly I believe if someone makes you uncomfortable, you should say so, how else would they know? 🤷♀️
Well, they might know by being mindful of what they say and what constitutes saying.🤯
Maybe I’m wrong.
What do you think?
Are all emojis equal?
What do you do when someone makes you uncomfortable online?
What do you wish you could say?
When I say I want to know what you think I mean it, so let me know.
Until next time! 😊
- Graphic made with Canva