Who invented emoticons? September 19th, 2007
You know, I really do not remember when I first saw the "" characters. I suppose it was the first time I started using email in the 1980s. You know what I mean – the ubiquitous little string of three characters that when you twist your head on the side it looks like a smiling face.
Well, there was an inventor of this "smiley" character set. It was Professor Scott E Fahlman who first used the set of characters in an email message on September the 19th, 1982, at 11:42 am.
What Fahlman proposed at the time was that this set of characters could be used in an email message as "joke markers", a way to indicate the emotion to be found after reading the following text. Language experts say that this set of characters and other ones invented following this, can display a range of emotions in an email that would otherwise be difficult to portray. We now know these little images as "emoticons" – icons to show emotions.