An Emoji for Your Thoughts?

With the recent introduction of 230 new emojis for 2019, which brings the total number of emojis up to 3,053, consumers are presented with a seemingly limitless selection of emojis applicable to any given situation. With 3,053 options to choose from, and increasingly capable screen displays, emojis are becoming both more visually nuanced and increasingly situation-specific. However, determining what exactly an emoji means in any given message remains an elusive task for courts, which face the challenge of extracting meaning from emojis without the benefit of context or user-specific meaning. Although emojis are a rapidly-growing cultural phenomenon (5 billion emojis were sent daily over Facebook Messenger in 2017), academics have only recently began to explore their effect on communication. Eric Goldman, a Professor of Law at Santa Clara University, contributes to this academic discussion by researching the use of emojis and emoticons in court opinions.…

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