Boondoggle

One blogger’s personal bridge to nowhere

A paean to the :/

Whatever one thinks of text messaging, there are some sentiments that it can capture more succinctly and beautifully than any other medium.  Case in point: the admittedly ambiguous and non-committal :/.

I confess, part of my affinity for the :/ stems exactly from its ability to hide the speaker’s true colors — a camouflage that epitomizes, probably at least according to detractors, the disinclination of many text messagers to put their sentiments and viewpoints on the line, to engage in actual conversation.  Still, while the humble :/ may boast of its reticence (contradiction intended), it can also convey much more than its minimalism might suggest.  Lacking the straightforward simplicity of the standard 🙂 or :(, the :/ is the Mona Lisa of emoticons.  Is that a sly grin, or a disappointed grumble?  Or perhaps just an abdication of opinion entirely?

To that question, I answer simply: :/.

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November 14, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

4 Comments »

  1. It is perhaps inevitable that any language innovation such as emoticons that were originally conceived to give clarity to emotionless emails and messaging would return to language’s true bastion of ambiguity. Does this mark the advancement of the subset into a robust communication medium (if medium is the appropriate term) that will advance in importance with time? How long will it be before emoticons are traded between not just junior analyst but senior management? Incorporated into sales pitches? Used in political campaigns? And what are the regional differences and etymology of these non-words? o.O

    I have to wonder if someone hasn’t already or is in the process of producing a thesis on emoticons…

    Comment by Zaphod | November 14, 2008 | Reply

  2. My favorite emoticon: The Prince.

    O(+>

    Comment by Caleb | November 14, 2008 | Reply

  3. I’m squinting, and I still can’t see it. Machiavelli?

    Comment by blogstra | November 14, 2008 | Reply

  4. Artist Formerly Known As…

    Comment by Caleb | November 14, 2008 | Reply


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