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Dave Ross

Technology changes the alphabet

You’ll find them in the “settings” option on your smart phone: hidden keyboards that take you far beyond the alphabet you grew up with, far beyond the foreign alphabets you never learned, far beyond even wingdings, all the way into the land of emojis.

Emojis are the tiny cartoon symbols that replaced the sideways smiley. You see them as emotional punctuation in text messages, but they are evolving into a universal symbolic language.

And they appear to have spawned a new social network, “We present ‘Emojili’ the emoji-only network.”

Yes – a social network that does not accept texts, but only emojis.

There’s no spam, they say, because there isn’t an emoji for spam. There are no “stupid” hashtags, and “the worst message you could recieve, is a pile of poo.”

I don’t know. I’m thinking this is some kind of British satire.

“Now we know what you’re thinking: This is satire. No one would actually make this thing,” the creators of Emojili say. “It’s not. And we have.”

So there it is – a new, wordless language. is now accepting screen names – which must be a series of emojis.

Is it real? Who knows anymore. But maybe it is! Perhaps this, at last, is the thing that will bring the world together, cutting across religious, ethnic, and class divisions. Perhaps it’s just an elaborate rebus game. Or maybe, just maybe, it will become a new type of silent music a way to communicate pure emotion using tiny cartoon symbols:

Oh my love, I HEART you only,
Through this, my most sincere emoji
I crave your digital embrace
Please text the yellow sunshine face
For should I get the frown from you
I’ll feel worse than a pile of poo.

It might take some getting used to.

Dave Ross on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM

  • Tune in to KIRO Radio weekdays at 5am for Dave Ross on Seattle's Morning News.

About the Author

Dave Ross

Dave Ross hosts the Morning News on KIRO Radio weekdays from 5-9 a.m. Dave has won the national Edward R. Murrow Award for writing five times since he started at KIRO Radio in 1978.


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