We don’t need studies to report on our fixation with emojis. The loss of tone in texts has demanded further expression, even from the most prolific writers, and so we have created images of expression to assist us. They help us communicate and they are fun. Studies have reported, however, that there has been some confusion regarding what certain emojis mean. Have you ever gotten a nice message, only to find a crying face underneath? Confused? As the Emojipedia was designed in Japan, sometimes we aren’t familiar with the original meanings or intentions. Some say it is the different devices on which we are receiving the images (Android, Twitter, Facebook, etc.) that create conflicting ideas, though we must admit that sometimes it comes down to just plain old interpretation. Here are a few of those ambiguous emojis.
1. OK! Emoji
This is quite possibly the most ambiguous emoji ever made. Most think she is dancing or “raising the roof.” Some think it is just playful. Really, she is doing the full-body gesture of “OK.”
2. Person Bowing
This emoji is often confused with a child being cute. It is actually a person bowing deeply.
3. Post Office Building
Alongside the other little buildings, where mostly we aren’t sure what they are for or about, this building is a Japanese Post Office.
4. Sweet Treat? Flower?
This emoji is actually a rice cake!
5. Hushed Face or Surprised Face?
This face is meant to be the “hush” face, as in “You are in the Library, so hush.” We think it looks a little, um, astonished…
6. Rice Cracker or Cookie?
This emoji is generally perceived to be a chocolate chip cookie or some cookie of the like. It is actually a Japanese rice cracker.
7. Prayer Hands or High Five?
This seems angelic enough, but could easily be confused with two hands slapping together in a high five.
8. Crying Cat Face
Cats are a big deal in Japan. In English-speaking countries, we generally aren’t sure why a cat is crying or what this means, but it is just much less serious than a crying human face.
9. Pine Decoration
Thought this was some kind of freaky mushroom stalks? The emerald city in The Wizard of Oz? It is actually Kadomatsu, a Japanese pine decoration that is placed in front of new homes to welcome good things.
10. It’s Not a Fart!
Believe it or not, this is not what you thought! It is not a symbol for a bottom-noise! It is the symbol for taking off quickly, cartoon-style.
Featured photo credit: Kaboompics via kaboompics.com