Emoticons are also well known as smileys. They are simple strings of characters that are interspersed in email text to convey emotions within written text. Emoticons help to clarify the tone of text messages.
Over time they have developed into an art form. There are now emoticons symbolizing Santa Claus, a Chef , heart and even different animals.
The origin of the original emoticon, the basic smiley face :-), is a matter of some dispute. Kevin Mackenzie and Scott Fahlman are often credited for creating the first emoticon. Others point to Scott Fahlman, who created the first digital smiley face
There are basic emoticons and smileys used in email messages to express emotions. Many people use Emoticons, they are a very popular form of shorthand for portraying emotions within email or instant messaging. There are thousands of emoticons located on the Internet and more are being created everyday. Here are a few of the more commonly used emoticons:
:-) The classic smiley face (happy, grin)
:) The simpler variation of smiley
:-( Frown (unhappy)
>:-< Mad or angry
:-o Surprise or shock
:-D Laughing or very happy
:-@Screaming or shouting
;-) Smile with a wink for joking, kidding, or sarcasm
*<:-) Santa Claus
8-) Wearing sunglasses
+<:-) The Pope
%-) A Happy Drunk
Emoticons can also help save time, and generally help to lighten the mood within a message. The key to using emoticons correctly is to use them sparingly and in the right setting with close friends and relatives. However, emoticons may seem annoying and unprofessional in a business setting.