BCM110: Representation and Interpretation



What is your interpretation of these three emojis?

Aristotle’s model of communication perceives a straightforward interpretation on how we receive messages. However, in the modern technological age where pictures and videos are valid responses to questions, can we really still look at communication as linear?

With first glances on emojis, we can’t really conclude that is a complex image. An eggplant is just an eggplant, right? At least that’s what my grandma would say.

I’ll give a cleaner example. Culture is an important factor that changes the way we view certain symbols. For example, if you were to be in countries such as Argentina, Spain, Italy, Greece or Uruguay, you may use the horn emoji as either “lucky sign,” or a bad omen. The horn emoji can be used negatively if that person believes their partner has cheated, however it can also be used to avoid back luck and “the evil eye.” If you were in China and you wanted to stop being friends with someone, send them the waving hand emoji.

Image result for waving emoji apple

There will always be a disruption of the message that is sent out, as we all have different factors that influence who we are; whether it be gender, age, culture etc. With the rise of social media and the easy accessibility to post whatever you want, anywhere, anytime, it is impossible to read the image only one way. Was there underlying meanings? Did they post this to be funny or serious? Do they just really like eggplants?

One thought on “BCM110: Representation and Interpretation

  1. Thought provoking read! Emoji’s are such good example as almost everyone uses them daily; I know I do. Emoji’s are so simple but as you said in the age where pictures and videos are valid responses, a simple image of something can meaning a totally different thing that is displayed. I have never stopped to think about the connotations and denotations of emoji’s or what is signified by a certain emoji. Probably because I’ve only just learnt about semiotics! But I will now. Your facts about the influence of culture on the interpretation of different emoji’s is very interesting! Was an enjoyable read.


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