Do you like smilies?

Hi everyone

What are your opinions about using smilies (emoticons) in the forum? Do you use them or not? Do you wish there were more forum smilies, fewer forum smilies or none at all? Why?

Are smilies easy to understand or do they tend to be misunderstood?

Who invented smilies anyway? Does anyone know?


Hi Amy!

Seriously, I like the smilies. Unfortunately I?m not really sure that they always express the same to all of us. In other words: it?s an issue of experiencing its meaning for each of us members, isn?t it? :?


If I’m not mistaken, it was Scott Fahlman, in 80s (in the middle of?).
At least, two the first: :slight_smile: and :frowning:

But now… Do you consider, for example, this as a smiley?

Hi Michael

Did you intend your smiley to show that you were confused? That’s the description of that particular smiley, anyway…

Hi Tamara

Yes, as a matter of fact your last smiley does look like a smiley. It's just that there are added features and gizmos and an extraterrestrial sort of action. Does that extravagant smiley say anything to you? 



Your Smiley is a future inmate of a mental facility, in that nobody will believe it when it proclaims its alien abduction.


To be honest, I used it just once (except for the above :)) – during my ‘black (life) stripe’ – when I definitely had a strong willing ‘to change the globe’ for other one, - but with all my might tried to keep smiling (:)) and to save remains of self-irony.

Hi Amy,
I like smilies and use them almost in all my posts :smiley: Sometimes they are difficult to understand, sometimes not. For example, Tamara’s smiley is not so expressive. I can only assume. I wish there on the forum were more of them .The choice of emoticons is not so vast here.
P.S. My mobile phone includes some smilies where one and the same smiley can express different emotions :lol:

The forum’s set of smilies is quite limited, but to me it’s enough (taking into account that this is an English language learning forum. :))

Maybe, sometimes (often :)) I need this one

It means ‘to play a child’ or ‘to tomfool’ :slight_smile:
But, of course, it’s just a matter of habit.

For other special occasions I can easily find on the Internet lots of other smilies.

Generally speaking, each forum community use its own regular set of smilies and their meanings (language learnt :)) gradually become well-understood by all members.
As a matter of their actual local use. :slight_smile:

Hi,all :slight_smile:
Long time no see! :? Anyway, I am glad to come back sometimes if free. :wink: I must be one of those people who use icons frequently in their posts. 8) That’s quite funny ,isn’t it? :lol: Well, somebody must say it childish, but I am not good at playing words , so it becomes my “second choice” :stuck_out_tongue:
Who invented smiles? :roll: I think you invented it ! When you were a little baby you knew how to smile without any imitation. Yeah, it is true. 8) A baby can do it quite well, their smiles come from the nature. Can you explain why they smile at a stranger though he said nothing and did nothing ? Nobody asked and taught them to do that.
I wonder if the smiling activity is aroused by our consciousnesses in deep minds, :roll: ohhh,it is hard to give a conclusion , because if it is so that means a baby has had its consciousness at a very very early age. But now some people are still arguing about this topic. Anyway, I have great patience to hear their final conclusions. 8)

Hi Amy!

You assumpted my intention using the particular smilie right. And this smilie isn?t that ambigious. Much more I referred to :wink: and :lol: when I wrote about the possibility of confusion. I mean, both of them might also be used or understood as an expression of being overbeared.

Hi Michael, please check the meaning of the verb assume (assumption is the noun). Also, you might want to try to keep your sentences simpler using phrases you know are right. Please, let me know what you think.


TOEIC listening, photographs: Big cranes[YSaerTTEW443543]

Hi Torsten, you?re right. Sorry for that silly mistake.

Please, could you explain that a bit more? I, currently, am not really aware of what you mean.


Hi Michael, what I was trying to say is that it is always good if you use word combinations and expressions that you have seen before. When you start creating your own phrases, you run the risk of ‘sounding strange’. For example, the expression ‘to be overbeared’ does not exist, you probably mean ‘to be overwhelmed’?[YSaerTTEW443543]

TOEIC listening, photographs: A trucking terminal[YSaerTTEW443543]


Personally I can’t stand the wretched things - I’m talking about these oddly named emoticons - I ask you! I think if ever I start using them, then is the time for those two white overalled people to come and take me away. And I bet you can’t guess what expression I have on my face while I’m writing this! Well, that’s not my problem.


Your sentence is more expressive than a thousand smilies, Alan, but, then again, you’re good at words.

Personally, I think the little symbols are a good and humorous complement to writing, although they don’t always fully or perfectly convey emotions. They can also easily be misinterpreted, but so can real body language.

All in all, smilies or not, communiction is a complex issue.

Hi everybody

I have to admit I like the little smilies and also enjoy looking at what people have dreamed up on those websites that have huge smiley collections. Not all of them are good, but sometimes some of them are quite humorous or cute or inventive, etc.

Just my two cents.


Hi :slight_smile:

I think emoticons are a nice way to convey the background meaning of your message fast, and also to make sure that those who are reading your message do not feel ambiguous about what you wrote. Of course, one may use proper language and represent his thoughts more thoroughly, so the smilies become unnecessary, however I believe communication via the internet must not be “one sided”. That is, when we are speaking to a person on the street there is not only verbal part in our communication, rather (to put it scientifically) we use lots of non-verbal channels, such as gestures and smilies. Do you feel comfortable when the one whom you are speaking to is smiling? :wink:

for example, consider the following (rather unusual) situation:
i’ve have written an essay, that turned to be inherently flawed. Mr. Alan, as it usually happens, replied to my message, and the essay appeared quoted in his post all in LARGE LETTERS (you know what that means, right?).
I feel both grateful for his time and corrections and a bit disgusted. here is what i can reply:

  1. Oh, why? so many errors… I hate you…
  2. Oh, why? so many errors… I hate you :slight_smile: :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

after the first answer I’ll probably get banned, and though I have only good feelings in my heart, the message appears to be rather cruel.
from the second answer, however, it is clear, that i don’t actually hate someone, rather I’m depressed to see so many flaws in my message. And, of course, I’m thankful to Mr. Alan for his corrections…

So, basically, what I’m talking about is, that smilies help us to make our internet communication appear like usual life communication. There is actually no need in LARGE numbers of smilies, and in LARGE smilies (that have appeared recently). Also, one must not be carried away completely by these forums, as plugging in a couple of smilies is not what actually matters in our life :slight_smile: The smile of an (un)known girl in the street is worth 1000 emoticons :wink:

Take care :wink:

Now this I agree with: ‘The smile of an (un)known girl in the street is worth 1000 emoticons’.


Hi Aereal

That was quite well written. :smiley:
I agree. Emoticons are a sort of cyberspace equivalent of body language.