I resisted emojis for a while and I would only use one when I felt it deemed appropriate. I’m not sure when my attitude changed, but I began using them more and more. “Happy Birthday’s!” felt strange without the balloon emoji and sometimes the laughing while crying emoji is really all you need to say. Emojis have not fully taken over my life, but the new iOS update is fun to play around with and I find myself altering what I’m going to say just to include emojis rather than words. Emojis convey tone when it’s needed most and emojis do what text alone cannot. How many times have you been in a fight with your significant other over text messages simply because your tone was perceived wrong? Just to ensure a scared boyfriend that I really am OKAY and I’m FINE, I’ll make sure to add a smiley emoji because otherwise I’ll get a million questions wondering if I’m telling the truth. Emojis have a way of reassuring the lost and conveying our truths.
The new iOS 10 update for iPhone users has brought with it an entirely new way to communicate. This new method could potentially change the face of digital communication as we know it. iOS 10 finds words in texts/emails/social media to replace with an emoji. As technology progresses, our words are being replaced with images – gifs, emojis, or memes – and the coming generations could rely more on emojis than any group prior. The more we replace our words with images, the worse our spelling becomes, the less we need grammar, and our attention span decreases.
Here’s a quick example on how to use this new iOS 10 function:
Simply type your message and press the emoji keyboard symbol and particular words that can be replaced with an emoji will highlight in orange, and then press each word to select the emoji version of that word.
In the above message I typed: “I won’t be home tonight, but there is spaghetti and wine for dinner if you want” and certain words were replaced with emojis.
This new update is only the beginning. Our text based communication will evolve beyond what we could imagine and words will start falling by the wayside. Our beloved books, articles and letters will be replaced with yellow smileys, 140 character headlines, and “heartfelt” gifs. Words can no longer meet our needs and culture has shifted to accommodate emojis; it’s the signal of a change that we cannot fight. Immersing ourselves in social media has only furthered the need for a more convincing form of communication.
Our society’s lack of face-to-face communication has left some heart sized hole in us and refusing to step into reality, we look for another way to channel meaning. Emojis bring the perfect balance. Offering tone and meaning, our sentences are flush with yellow smileys or cartoon animals. We now end our “goodnight sweetheart” texts with a variety of hearts, or we offer condolences on a loss with the single tear crying face. Emojis have replaced conventional grammar like the period, question mark, or exclamation point with the crying laughing face, the scratching face puzzled look or a thumbs up. As technology progresses, what will be the place of conventional grammar? Will we even need it?
This new shift from text to image based communication will soon invade all sorts of media. Our private messages are already being shifted to image based, emojis are filtering into our social media accounts, and they are appearing in ads. McDonald’s is ahead of the times, as always and already beginning their emoji based ad campaign.
Other organizations have taken note and created their own compelling ad, such as United Kingdom based Amvbbdo agency urging drivers to not text and drive through albeit morbid emojis.
Alongside ads, the popular mobile payment service Venmo has incorporated emojis into payment titles. This article has detailed the top ranking emojis listed for payments, ranging from an easily decipherable night out grabbing pizza and beer to a more racy night out depicted by certain fruits.
Will this shift into imaged based communication bring the final blow to bookstores? Will our civilization become so vapid that we cannot focus for the duration of a book or article? Attention spans are decreasing, but do we really need to go so basic as a smiley face to convey meaning or retain an audience?
Do you think emojis have a positive influence on society? How do you guys use emojis? Comment below!