All the same emoji are not the same

Did you know that the smiling emoji you send out on a google phone is not the same emoji that is received and published on Facebook?  Or that the smiling emoji you send as part of a text message on your iPhone is not the same one received on a Twitter account?

grinning face with smiling eyes1

GroupLens Research at the University of Minnesota

In fact, these various smiling emoji can be interpreted as not smiling at all.  They can seem angry.  Some “grinning face with smiling eyes” emoji show teeth.  Some mouths are turned up while others seem straight or even turned down.

Research being conducted by Hannah Miller and Isaac Johnson at the University of Minnesota shows that because of the various ways the same emoji is shown on different platforms, the message of the emoji can be misinterpreted.

Not only that, but an emoji sent from one phone to an identical phone (the same emoji sent as received) can be misinterpreted by the receiver.

Emoji are supposed to reduce ambiguity of emotions in written communication.  They are supposed to increase the likelihood that the sender’s emotional content will be understood by the receiver.

But they don’t.  😦  So be careful when you send emoji with your written content.

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