Re: Emoji: emoticons vs. literacy

From: Leo Broukhis (
Date: Sun Jan 11 2009 - 16:42:59 CST

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    On Sun, Jan 11, 2009 at 2:05 PM, John Hudson <> wrote:

    > It is absurd, but so is the contention that a pictorial representation is
    > semiotically equivalent to a word.

    I did not say "semiotically", I said "semantically". An abstract
    picture of a dog - with no recognizable traits of a particular breed,
    mind you - when it occurs in plain text in language X will have the
    same meaning as the corresponding stylistically neutral word for Canis
    familiaris in language X.

    Or is Unicode is into separating glyphs by semiotics now?

    > The sequence of letters 'dog' spells a
    > particular word that has a particular meaning in a particular language; it
    > may, indeed, have some totally different meaning in a different language. A
    > picture of the animal known in English as a dog has no such particular
    > meaning, it is chien, hund, chó, собака, etc. Familiarity with the spelling
    > conventions of English, such as they are, enables one to pronounce the name
    > for this animal. A picture of a dog tells you nothing about the
    > pronunciation the name in any language.
    > All that said, if a dog's head emoji is encoded in Unicode, I vote for the
    > reference glyph to be a Wheaten Terrier.

    You'll be messing with semiotics then. It should be a mutt, not a
    pure-breed dog.


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