Relationships between emoticon usage and recipient groups in students’ text messages

Teh, Phoey Lee * and Ooi, Pei Boon * and Gill, C. M. H. D.* (2020) Relationships between emoticon usage and recipient groups in students’ text messages. In: Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Information Integration and Web-based Applications & Services (iiWAS2020), 30 November - 2 December 2020, ACM, New York, NY, USA,.

Teh Phoey Lee Preprint - Relationships between emoticon usage and recipient groups.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.

Download (536kB) | Preview


Emoticons are pictographic representations of facial expressions that are used to convey emotions in text messages and other similar methods of communication. Most research on emoticons has examined how they are used in public forums rather than in private messaging. Using a sample of undergraduate students (n=106; male 52.83%; mean age 20.26 years, SD 1.93), this study examines the use of emoticons in private text communication. Results reveal that emoticon usage is highest amongst friends, followed by siblings, then parents, other family members and more distant connections. Emoticons representing positive emotions are more commonly used than those representing strong negative emotions. Emoticons representing relief were found to be used particularly within peer group communication, whereas emoticons representing contentment were used more with family members and other, more distant, connections. The use of the “Relieved” emoticon with peers may reflect overcoming the stressors associated with shared educational challenges, whereas using the “Content” emoticon outside peers and family may represent emotional modulation and presentation.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: emoticons; emotions; facial expressions; happy; relieved
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Divisions: General > Directorate
Sunway University > School of Engineering and Technology [formerly School of Science and Technology until 2020] > Dept. Computing and Information Systems
Sunway University > School of Medical and Life Sciences [formerly School of Healthcare and Medical Sciences until 2020] > Department of Medical Sciences
Depositing User: Dr Janaki Sinnasamy
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 04 Dec 2020 05:29
Last Modified: 04 Dec 2020 05:29

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item