It is true, Emoticons are used to express the emotions that can’t be seen by the person who is receiving them.  Does this make sense to you?  It probably does if you spend time in a chat room or e-mailing others.

You may have heard about Emoticons from your children.  Kids and teens are quite adept at using and understanding Emoticons.  In a way it is like a foreign language.  Young people tend to catch on much more quickly than older people.

An Emoticon is part of cyberspace slang and there is an almost endless choice of them.  To make an Emoticon you use a combination of numbers, symbols and letters that fashion a picture.  These often can be seen best when viewed sideways.  If you receive an Emoticon in a cyberspace message and you don’t quite get it, simply tilt your head a little to the side and it will probably become clear.

Emoticons are like the hieroglyphics of this generation.  Or, you could think of them as a code.  Used in the wrong ways they can certainly exclude the people who do not understand what they mean or how to respond.  They are very informal and you would not want to use them when you are sending an e-mail to your employer, unless of course your employer is a young person who thinks this is savvy.

When using Emoticons is is a good idea to treat them as you would any use of slang.  Be considerate and realize that there may be people who do not know much about them.  Don’t overuse Emoticons and use them accurately.

Emoticons can be a great way to let those you are corresponding with visualize your emotions when they are not able to see you face to face.

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