The rise of the emoji 表情符號的興起

Are you an emoji person? How have simple smiley faces become powerful communication tools?
The language of emojis

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很多人在用手機發短信時,經常會在字裡行間內加上幾個被稱作“表情符號”的小圖標,這個近來十分流行的新功能不僅能讓枯燥無味的文字看起來豐富多彩,還可以快速且高效地向他人傳達我們的情感。你經常使用哪些表情符?本集《隨身英語》探討表情符號成為一種國際化語言及重要交流工具的發展過程。

課文內容

Vocabulary: emotions 詞彙: 情感

Happy, angry, amazed – these are some of the emotions we like to express these days when we’re sending a message on our smartphones! That’s why many of us now add little pictures to our texts to brighten up someones mobile screen but we’re also using them as a quick way of telling someone how we’re feeling. Yes, emojis have become a vital tool for communication.

Let’s clear one thing up first – there are emojis and emoticons. The latter are little images made using normal keys on a keyboard. For example, a colon, two dots, followed by the curved line of a close brackets is a ‘smiley face’. But as technology has become more sophisticated, pre-made images have been created that can be simply added to your messages, which is great!

The emoji was first invented in Japan in the late 1990s and the word ’emoji’ comes from the Japanese words for ‘picture’ and ‘character’. The number of different images has dramatically increased since then and now we have a picture for every mood or situation.

So now we have the option to give this new creation the visual ‘thumbs-up‘ but have you thought (puzzled face) why we’ve become so addicted to using emojis? Professor Vyv Evans, has written a book called ‘The Emoji Code’ – he says “increasingly, what we’re finding is that digital communication is taking over from certain aspects of face-to-face interaction… one of the reasons emojis are so interesting is that they really do enable us to express our emotional selves much more effectively.” So emojis are a sort of substitute for the visual signals or non-verbal cues we normally give when we speak to someone face-to-face.

Another advantage of emojis is that they are an international language – they don’t use words but tell a message in pictorial form so they can be easily interpreted whatever your native language. However, the emojis you send need some thought as they can sometimes be misinterpreted – if a friend sends you an emoji of a hammer, you may think he is angry when really he is saying he has hurt himself or he is clumsy!

Emojis are a good way for showing empathy – they are a virtual hug or a flirtatious tease. But as linguist Neil Cohn says, “to many, emoji are an exciting evolution of the way we communicate; to others, they are linguistic Armageddon.” It does show there is a lot more to our communication than words alone but does this mean the decline in traditional writing?

詞彙表

happy 高興的
angry 憤怒的
amazed 驚訝的
to express 表露、表達(情感)
emoji 表情符號,“繪文字”
sophisticated 複雜精致的
mood 情緒,心情
thumbs-up (豎起拇指)讚
puzzled 迷惑的
addicted 使人沉迷的,上癮的
face-to-face 面對面的
substitute 替代物
non-verbal cue 非言語的暗示
pictorial 圖畫的
interpreted 被理解
clumsy 笨手笨腳的
empathy 同感、共鳴
flirtatious 打情罵俏的
linguistic Armageddon “語言的末日”,即語言的滅絕

測驗與練習

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. How has technology changed to make adding pre-made emojis to our text messages easy? 

2. What new word has been created by combining the Japanese words for ‘picture’ and ‘character’?

3. According to the article, why do we use emojis more these days?

4.True or false: Emojis can be understood regardless of the language you speak.

5. What word used in the article means ‘made by computers; not physically existing’?

2. 請你在不參考課文的情況下完成下列練習。選擇一個意思合適的單字填入句子的空格處。

1. I knew my brother was very upset but he couldn’t find the words ______ himself.  

expressing       expressed       to express       to expression

2. The audience gave the new show the ______ – some of them said it was the best thing they had ever seen!

substitute       thumbs-up       face-to-face       amazed

3. Although my boyfriend told me on the phone that he was leaving me, I had to meet him ______ to see if he was serious.

face-to-face       face-or-face       face up       face-to-facing

4. I’m so ______, I keep dropping things and breaking them!

angry       happy       addicted       clumsy

5. My boss is being so ______, I’m going to have to say something to him.

sophisticated       flirtatious       amazed       pictorial

答案

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. In what way has technology changed to make adding pre-made emojis to our text messages easy?
Technology has become more sophisticated, so pre-made images can easily be added to our text messages.

2. What new word has been created by combining the Japanese words for ‘picture’ and ‘character’?
Emoji – e (, “picture”) + moji (文字, “character”).

3. According to the article, why do we use emojis more these days? 
The use of emojis has increased because we communicate more via phones and computers. Emojis are used a substitute for the visual signals or non-verbal cues we normally give when we speak to someone face-to-face.

 

4.True or false: Emojis can be understood regardless of the language you speak.
True.they are an international language – they don’t use words but convey a message in pictorial form so they can easily be interpreted whatever your native language.

5. What word used in the article means ‘made by computers; not physically existing’?
Virtual. Eg: A virtual hug.

2. 請你在不參考課文的情況下完成下列練習。選擇一個意思合適的單字填入句子的空格處。

1. I knew my brother was very upset but he couldn’t find the words to express himself.  

2. The audience gave the new show the thumbs-up – some of them said it was the best thing they had ever seen!

3. Although my boyfriend told me on the phone that he was leaving me, I had to meet him face-to-face to see if he was serious.

4. I’m so clumsy, I keep dropping things and breaking them!

5. My boss is being so flirtatious, I’m going to have to say something to him.

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