Add Spice to your Email Messages with Text Based Email Emotion Icons
Email software has revolutionized the way that humans communicate. By using email, it is possible to compose and
send a complete letter and have it delivered instantly without having to worry about postage.
It is also possible to broadcast your message to many people at once.
The drawback of email is that, with text based communication, it is not possible to convey subtle shades of
meaning that are normally communicated by body language and tonal voice cues. Email emotion icons exist to
fill this void.
The first and still most commonly used of the email emotion icons is the simple smiley face. Using a
colon, a hyphen, and an open parenthesis, this most common of the email emotion icons indicates that the current
statement should be considered tongue in cheek.
In addition to the basic smiley, as this class of email emotion icons has become known, other email emotion
icons have been created that allow more sophisticated shades of meaning to be inserted into email messages.
By replacing the colon in the smiley face with a semicolon, the icon looks like a winking face and is used to
convey sarcasm. By replacing the open parenthesis with a straight line or closed parenthesis, it is possible
to create email emotion icons that indicate skepticism or displeasure.
Later email clients allow messages to be composed in hypertext markup language (HTML), the language of the World
Wide Web. This allows much more complicated images to stand in for email emotion icons. With HTML
email, it is not necessary to use the limited ASCII character set to convey emotion. Email emotion icons can
actually be imbedded as images. However, since not everyone is able to receive HTML email, be sure that the
recipient has an HTML enabled email client before sending this type of message.