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World Emoji Day: Are Emojis Relationship Makers Or Relationship Breakers?

Whatsapp Message: Case One

"Hey, how is your day coming along? I made dinner (insert smiley and a food emoji)"

"Thanks but I won't be there for the dinner. Have some meeting scheduled might eat out."

"Okay fine" (insert smiley and kisses)

Whatsapp Message: Case Two

"Hey, how is your day coming along? I made some pasta" (minus the smiley and a food emoji)

"Thanks but I won't be there for the dinner. Have some meeting scheduled might eat out."

"Okay fine!" (no smiley and no kisses either)

In the case one, the person would feel that his or her partner is fine with the meetings and doesn't mind him or her not coming for the dinner. However, in the second case, the tables will turn a bit and the person is very likely to feel that whether his or her partner is annoyed by his or her absence at the dinner table. The "Okay fine!" without any sign of emoji is likely to get a person confused and feel a little apprehensive, even if for a few minutes. So, this is what emojis do to a relationship. And since, we the overthinkers live in the world of social media, it gets pretty significant to talk about emojis. On the World Emoji Day (never knew 20 years down the line we would be celebrating something like this), we will talk about emojisation of a relationship.

Emojis were created in 1999 but by 2019, we have a vast number of emojis to describe multitude of feelings. Right from a smiley emoji to an astronaut, we have a pool of emojis to choose from. And in the times of long-form articles changing into 60 words short stories, emojis make a lot of sense. These emojis convey a feeling in a word. We are living in this fast-paced multiple lanes time, where people don't have time mostly, agreed or not? So, these emojis not only saves time but also add brevity and makes things lighter and less tighter.

For example, if your partner is a witty one (lucky you) and sends a really nice joke or a meme and you react it with :D emojis (the laughing out loud emojis), it ad idem conveys that you are highly amused and you need not write a line. However, if you choose to write a line, for instance, "This was a funny one". Yes, okay, your partner would get it that you found it funny but he or she won't be convinced as they wouldn't get to know how amused you are - whether it made you ROFL or are you just amused, like the regular boring amused.

Similarly, if you are angry but not really angry, inserting an angry emoji will just make things cute and convey to the other person that he or she has nothing great to worry about it. Apart from that, emojis help you send flowers (without actually buying a bouquet but sometimes you should buy); it even helps you send cactus (in case she doesn't like flowers); tell a person whether you are dancing or flying or eating bagel on a public bench, etc. etc. So, emoji helps save a relationship, but do they really?

See, these days emojis or emoticons have become a part of life. However, some of us are not really visual thinkers. Some can find emojis immature and might want to continue with old-fashioned texting habit. Now, that's perfectly okay, if one partner is willing to understand. But if the other partner expects an emoji, he or she might feel inadequacy in love in the absence of hugs, kisses, holding hands, flowers, etc., emojis. And this might create a subtle friction. Emojis can convey an expression but not show the intensity.

Also, take these two messages, let's say Message A and Message B.

Message A: "My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you."

Message B: I (insert Heart emoji) You.

The Message A was a quote from Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice and the Message B is a millennial lingo. So, upon comparing, did you notice how emojis killed the effect of those beautiful lines? It definitely feels more special to convey love and emotions with some classic poetic lines than something as obsolete as a heart emoji.

Which brings us to the third and final point that emojis are so exact that they miss out on the grey areas and relationships have elements of grey to it (by grey we mean the undefined space). Emojis are exact but feelings are not. Which emoji can convey that you are feeling blue and a little disturbed because you like the other person and you don't want to hurt him or her but you don't feel like you can connect with him or her on so many levels anymore and that you are falling out of love? Emojis are so defined and they can't answer these questions. These cartoon images can never encroach the important yet grey spaces of relationship. Moreover, they can take the seriousness out of relationships and reduce them to an exchange of your childhood obsession for cartoons.

So, on the World Emoji Day, we feel that there has to be some balance. You can't complete drown your messages into the sea of emojis but you can't ignore them either. What are your views on that?

Read more about: world emoji day emojis
Story first published: Wednesday, July 17, 2019, 12:58 [IST]
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