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How Do You Feel About Emoticons?

I have such a love-hate relationship with emoticons. On the one hand, they're harmless little icons that add a bit of cuteness, and on the other hand, they're tools of passive aggressive communication.

Overly dramatic? Well, have you ever gotten a negative or critical sounding IM from a colleague or friend. . . punctuated with a happy face? Sometimes people use them to take the weight off of a potentially negative message, but in my experience, it almost always backfires and makes the message seem even worse, like you're smugly smirking when you're saying it.

My advice for using emoticons is to only use them if they fit the tone you're already using. Don't use them to change your tone, because it probably will — but not in the way you want it to.

Think I take emoticons too seriously? I'm not the only one — there have been studies that show that emoticons mean different things to different cultures.

Join The Conversation
LittleMzFit LittleMzFit 8 years
:truestory: syako :speedy: The key is to type correctly! It's Monday. Please forgive :pray:
LittleMzFit LittleMzFit 8 years
:true story: syako. :speedy:
syako syako 8 years
I agree with most everyone here. Fun for sugar or with friends, totally inappropriate in the office or professional settings. :dance: btw, the sugar emoticons are the best! :true:
glam-sugar glam-sugar 8 years
I love them in personal conversations, as long as they aren't overused. :bananana:
SB-Marilyn SB-Marilyn 8 years
"Anonymous" all smilies are emoticons. You dislike the graphic version of them.
LittleMzFit LittleMzFit 8 years
Agree w/ Chouette. I :heart: them for personal but :raspberry: them for professional use.
Anniina Anniina 8 years
I think [crazy] emoticons are mainly for the age of 10-25 and cultural thing. I don't think it's something you start doing, it's either there or not
Chouette4u Chouette4u 8 years
"Which chat is this print screen from? I mean, which program? " iChat
brilliance13 brilliance13 8 years
haha i love the image!
opentypeA opentypeA 8 years
I'll second SB Marilyn's comment.
devils devils 8 years
i love playing with the funny custom ones you can have on MSN =)
SB-Marilyn SB-Marilyn 8 years
I find them necessary at times as it is hard to convey proper emotion over IM, TM's and email.
beautifulmel beautifulmel 8 years
I don't like emoticons unless you need to express that you aren't mad or that you're just joking. other than that, they are useless.
jennjennnbubba jennjennnbubba 8 years
Good point Beth, I would say that I overuse on a non-formal basis.
jennjennnbubba jennjennnbubba 8 years
hmm, I do overuse the emoticons.... :oy: no harm intended
bethinabox bethinabox 8 years
I like emoticons. :) But I think I'm pretty good at using them appropriately, and I NEVER use them when e-mailing in a not-casual capacity.
kaykayelle kaykayelle 8 years
(Hysterical image accompaniment!)
Chouette4u Chouette4u 8 years
They're fine in personal situations, but please don't use them in professional conversations...
kiwigeek kiwigeek 8 years
I really do love emoticons :cheer: but... :rant: I have friend who always uses the :P smiley, sometimes in the most inappropriate situations! I can totally relate.
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