Sunday, July 17 is World Emoji Day. This post about speaking in emoji is a full-text translation of a post written only in emoji.
For the past couple of months, I’ve been wracking my brains, trying to think of a way to do a blog post about emojis. Then, finally, it hit me: why not write a blog post USING emojis?
Blame the Oxford Dictionaries.
You see, every year the American Dialect Society comes up with a “Word of the Year.” In 2015, the society declared “they” as Word of the Year.
Not everyone agreed with that choice, however. In fact, not everyone agreed the word of the year should be a word.
The Oxford Dictionaries instead chose an emoji as the “word” that editors felt “best reflected the ethos, mood and preoccupations of 2015.”
The emoji chosen was “face with tears and joy.”
Just in case you’ve been stranded on a desert island without communication with the outside world for several years, or are, perhaps, Amish, an emoji is a digital icon used in place of words. So, for instance, instead of typing “I’m happy” in your text or email, you can just select a smiley face from your list of emojis.
Emojis are either the latest step forward or backward in our ever-changing—and ever quickening—written communication, depending on your outlook.
It’s easy to view such developments with disdain or even fear, and worry about their impact on language and culture. It’s important to remember, however, that our language and communication methods have always been evolving.
For instance—do you know the origin of the totally textable, totally Valley Girl-sounding phrase “OMG (for Oh, My God!)?” No, it wasn’t a teenager at a 1990s Tiffany concert, nor was it a snarky revelation by an early texting smarty. OMG actually dates back to 1917, when it was first used in a letter from Lord Fisher to Winston Churchill.
“I hear that a new order of Knighthood is on the tapis—O.M.G. (Oh! My God!)”
Way back in the late 16th and early 17th centuries, Shakespeare was busy inventing more than 1700 words—including besmirch (Hamlet), and majestic (Julius Caesar).
One neat thing about communicating with emojis is that it lets you get to the heart of the matter as quickly as possible. No corporate doublespeak, obtuse wording, or confusing jargon.
Change is never easy. It can be scary. But perhaps it’s better to make the waves and be part of the change than it is to be pulled along by forces outside your control.
On the other hand, I find communicating finer topics and more intricate details to be much more difficult using emojis. This fact has been made clear to me through this exercise.
In the end, it’s all about making communications simpler, and using the appropriate tool for the job at hand.
Draper (yes, here’s the tie-in!) takes this attitude. We’ve continued innovating and evolving. To make our customers’ jobs simpler we’ve developed several online tools, such as the Projection Planner. We’ve also developed products like Optically Seamless TecVision that make it simple to address very specific needs.
And there’s more to come.
We won’t say just what right now, but be on your toes: look for more innovation from Draper in the near future!