Meaning of emojis – Smiley face emoji
Find out all emoji meanings easily.
Emojis – Because a picture can say more than many words
The written word irritates to misunderstandings. Especially with hasty typed chat or mail messages, a remark can quickly become misunderstood and cause an unwanted reaction. In order for the to happen as rarely as possible, small pictures are added to a text message, which clarify the written and in a certain direction direct. If you are thinking about the famous smileys, you are on the right way – but not quite there yet, because we are already a few steps further today and want to talk about emojis with their meaning.
What is an emoji?
Small pictures, which should express a certain emotion or reference. It was invented by a Japanese man named Shigetaka Kurita. He was to design NTT DoCoMo small graphics in 1990 for the Japanese mobile phone provider NTT to simplify communication via short text messages. The result were the first emojis, which were very spartan and did not have by far the high degree of detail common today, not to mention several colors. Only 12 x 12 pixels and one only color included the first emoji face! The new Emojis used to have different smiley meanings. But it was precisely this modest quality of the early years that helped the emoticon to establish itself so quickly: The first one was so small that it didn’t fall under the copyright – which pleased the competitors of NTT DoCoMo very much as they could also equip their own devices with emoticons. It didn’t take long before belonged to good sound to upgrade mobile phone messages with an emoticon.
The not always easy question about the emoji meaning
Today, in the age of the Internet and continuous digital communication via the various messengers, emojis have become an integral part of our everyday lives. At size and versatility the small pictures have increased considerably – and a Snapchat emoji meaning is not always immediately apparent to the user. Therefore there are a lot of websites, which are dedicated to the topic emoji meaning and offer exact and partly very comprehensive listings. The interpretation of an emoticon meaning is ultimately also complicated by the copyright-related deviations of the individual emojis. Sometimes this can lead to misunderstandings, and on the Internet regular petty wars have already flared up around a certain WhatsApp emoji meaning. In the case of the emoticon “Grinning face with smiling eyes” (Unicode 1F601), the new emoji meaning was even interpreted quite differently by many users: While one part interpreted the emoticon positively, the second large group saw a negative statement in it.
Smileys versus emojis
Of course, the basic idea of smileys was also known in Japan, which was enthusiastic about technology. The Japanese smileys and emoticons developed in Japan initially independently of their western variant. The Japanese Shigetaka Kurita is considered the inventor of the emojis. In principle, smileys could also be called emoji faces and vice versa. But there are some differences in the Japanese way to today’s emoticon. On the one hand, earlier than Internet users in the West, the Japanese began to describe not only emotions, but also images with key combinations and later to convert them graphically. For example, the emoticon meaning :*> stands for a cat and the WhatsApp emoji meaning (:< for a bird. In addition, the Japanese were pioneers in creating emoticon meaning not only expression images that were read from left to right. They also made horizontal emoticons such as the key combination (²_²) for a woman with long eyelashes or (*_*) for an extremely happy person who shines with his heart. Basically, the Japanese version of the smileys was characterized by a higher complexity and a greater joy of improvisation compared to its western counterparts. This was due to the Japanese enthusiasm for technology and the stronger imprint of thinking in pictures. Similar to China, the Japanese spelling is also oriented towards pictorial expression. The Japanese have set standards in the field of smileys. With their complex and loving emojis they inspired their colleagues in the West. Internet users gratefully accepted the suggestions from the Far East and downloaded the graphic images from Japan for their own chat channels. As competition stimulates business, Western companies of the "New Economy" have expanded their smiley face offer accordingly in order to be able to keep up with the competition from Japan.
The emoticons as the next step
Smileys, emojis and emoticons are often equated. Of course, all three terms stand for conveying basic moods and feelings visually. But strictly speaking, text faces and emojis are the key combinations that without technical conversion. One text faces is already the conversion of the smiley. “Le Lenny Face” ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) is also famous. There are already many variants of this. These lenny faces usually consist of three components. The eyes, mouth/nose and ears. The Lenny Face can be used to express a wide variety of emotions. When the offers of providers to already provide a wide range of smileys graphically converted were not yet widespread, the early internet users with great dedication and passion independently developed new key combinations and thus extended the “vocabulary” of smileys and text faces more and more. It was a very creative age in the early days of the Internet. Today, as the providers of various messenger and chat channels take over this work, the visual icons are already available to users. You no longer need to use the corresponding key combination, but can generate a prefabricated image with one click. Smileys and text faces are the key combinations that stand for the respective message. An emoji is already the transformed image. It kind of repressed the old smiley as still used on Snapchat.
Global standard thanks to Unicode
So that the new emoji faces can also be used problem-free all over the world, there is Unicode. This is a proven international standard that includes almost every character used in the world and makes it usable for digital use. Only in October 2010 did the emoji make it into the Unicode tables, but also in many forms. The principle is very simple: Each character or symbol contained in Unicode has its own, unchangeable four-digit ID, which can be read by any compatible program and output in the defined form. So if you use an new emoji, then not the actual image, but only the code is transferred, which the recipient translates back into the appropriate emoticon. The aim is to ensure uniform communication. Before Unicode was developed and used for uniform representation of each emoji, there were several other methods, for example Shift_JIS. The competing and divergent systems have caused a lot of chaos and confusion before Unicode finally created a universally valid standard. So also the Whatsapp smiley meanings could be interpreted correctly.
…and still differences?
In tensionto the experience of many users is that the emojis used differ significantly depending on the platform (Apple, Android, Facebook, WhatsApp, Snapchat, TikTok). This is simply because the different providers use their own text emoji font for each of their programs, for which the respective images have been designed differently. For example, Unicode defines a large, smiling smiley, but not its exact proportions or color. Therefore, massiv differences may occur in some cases. But do not worry, the emoji meanings on Whatsapp and other platforms remain the same. In addition, the modern emojis unlike their tiny forefather are large and detailed enough to fall under the copyright. Every single one of these pictures is protected by a copyright and may not be used without the permission of the copyright holder! That is why every provider has to design his own emojis – which in turn are protected against access by third parties.