World Emoji Day 2020: Have our words evolved into emojis as a form of expression?
Emojis serve as the perfect addition to our day to day texting by adding a visual element to it.Updated: Jul 17, 2020 08:46 IST
World Emoji Day is a global celebration of the digital icon that has helped people around the world express their emotions better. When you are at a loss of words or simply too lazy to type, you can convey a wide range of emotions through just a tap of your finger.
Words have become a thing of the past as you can express anger, love, happiness, joy, playfulness, laughter, shock, disgust and more. Emojis are not just limited to that; more and more objects, animals, activities, and faces are added each year simply to ensure that if you ever need to say something, it can be done through emojis! A whole string of sentences can be constructed just with the use of emojis.
The universally agreed-upon meaning of these emojis has evolved from being occasionally used into an entire language of its own.
According to Johanna Nichols, former professor of linguistics, the gold standard for distinguishing languages is “mutual intelligibility.” And even if emojis do not yet qualify as a formal language, they work exceptionally well as a system of visual expression.
The Emoji History
World Emoji Day, created by Jeremy Burge, is an unofficial holiday celebrated on July 17, which is famously the date on the calendar emoji on iPhone. He is also known as the founder of Emojipedia.
World Emoji Day has been celebrated annually since 2014 and it was even on Twitter’s top trending on July 17, 2015. This event also marks the day that Apple announces all upcoming expansions to its emoji packs.
The first emoji ever to be created was by Shigetaka Kurita in 1999 when he worked as an engineer at the Japanese Mobile Operator, NTT Docomo. It was in the year 2010 that these emojis gained popularity and came to be widely used by people over the world. The origins of the word, emoji also come from Japanese – e (picture) and moji (character).
In the immortal words of Gina Linetti on the television show Brooklyn Nine-Nine, “The English language cannot fully capture the depth and complexity of my thoughts, so I am incorporating emoji into my speech to better express myself, *winky face.”
The usage of emojis has become so commonplace in popular culture that it is hard to imagine not using them in the day-to-day. We have seen the influence of emojis to such an extent that there has even been a movie made exclusively about it. The influence even goes go so far as to allow people all around the world to use emoji representations of other cultures that are now being included in the emojipedia.
The current creators of emojis have released more options that include gender-neutral alternatives, skin tones all over the spectrum and even representation of accessibility like mechanical limbs, hearing aids, etc. to make this form of communication completely accessible.