How to Make Emoticons

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How to Make Emoticons

Whether it’s a text message, an instant messenger service, or blog entries, we all have a way with words. Yet even the most poetic statements cannot express emotions and expressions better than the real thing. In the absence of a real smile, a real laugh, or real tears, there are always options like :) , =)), and :’(. Yes, emoticons; what would online life would be without them?

Emoticons are graphical representations of facial expressions, usually made with characters from plain text. With emoticons, a person uses conventional symbols that represent a person’s mood or feeling. Some programs convert the set of characters into simple computer graphics to make a smiley, although the principle remains the same. Here are some ways that you can make and use emoticons.

Making Emoticons

Emoticons are made with punctuation marks, letters, numbers, and other characters found and supported by a cellular phone or a computer keyboard. Emoticons are typically read sideways; for example, the emoticons “:-)” and “:)” are understood to mean a smiling face, and “:-(” and “:(” are understood to mean that the person using the emoticon is sad. You can browse through emoticons through your instant messenger program or on the Internet, and you can learn to make more emoticons the more you use the Web or if you use mobile communication more often.

There are two types of emoticons:

    emoticons

  • Conventional emoticons are expressed as they are written, which means the program or the site does not convert them into simple computer graphics. Older models of mobile phones and older instant messenger programs display conventional emoticons as they are typed by the sender.
  • Graphical emoticons. Most instant messenger programs, chatting clients, and next-generation mobile phones convert smileys into simple graphics. The graphics may be static or animated with simple frames. Graphical emoticons may sometimes use special input commands to be activated in a program or a webpage. The “Peanut Butter and Jelly Time” dancing banana emoticon is an example of a graphical emoticon.
  • Emoticons in Asia. In countries like Japan, Korea, China, and the Philippines, emoticons are expressed and read upright instead of sideways. A happy face is written as “(^_^),” while a sad face is written as “(T_T).”

Emoticon Etiquette

Emoticons are convenient and easy to use, but it’s also very easy to misuse and abuse them. While it may look cute to use emoticons every once in a while, the message may be unclear and can sometimes be interpreted incorrectly. Here are some tips to keep in mind when you’re using emoticons:

  • Never use emoticons in business correspondences like letters, e-mail, or instant messaging.
  • Emoticons can sometimes take up bandwidth and memory allocations. Use emoticons sparingly when you’re talking with someone with a slow computer or a slower Internet connection than yours.
  • Avoid filling your conversations with emoticons. Remember that the message is still more important than the emoticons you use to emphasize or even exaggerate your emotions

Emoticons are quick ways to convey your feelings to a chat buddy or a friend over at the other line. When used properly and correctly, emoticons can show your feelings better than a long string of words.

 

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