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Kenyans' most popular emojis; tears of joy wins

By Faith Ngina | July 16th 2021

The iconic “face with tears of joy” took the crown in new rankings of Kenya’s most popular emoji’s.

In the analysis released by social media company Facebook, the “love heart” and the “rolling on the floor laughing” emojis topped usage between April 4 and July 3.

The analysis was done ahead of the World Emoji Day which will be marked tomorrow. Emojis are a common means of expression in social media platforms as a means of reacting to posts, pictures or events.

Facebook also measured the popularity of emojis on food, drinks, age and gender. The most popular food and drink emojis used by Kenyans include, birthday cake, aubergine (eggplant), shortcake, candy, and lollipop.

Although Facebook listed the eggplant emoji on the food category, Kenyans, and perhaps people worldwide, use it to represent something totally different. 

Facebook, however, interpreed its usage as per the original, assigned meaning of the emoji.

When it comes to age, the most popular emojis in the 18-24 bracket include face with tears of joy, love heart and rolling on the floor laughing. Ages 25 to 44 mostly use face with tears of joy and love heart. People aged 45 and above are mostly fond of the love heart, folded hands and face with tears of joy.

The love heart and face with tears of joy emojis seem to be popular in all age brackets. By gender, globally, over the past three months, women created more posts containing emojis than men.

In Kenya, face with tears of joy, love heart and rolling on the floor laughing emojis are popular for both men and women. In addition to the emojis, Facebook Messenger launched Soundmojis yesterday, to tap into the social media users dalliance.

Soundmojis is a new feature that enables people to send short sound clips in Messenger chat. People will be able to choose from a library of options with sound effects (crickets, clapping, drumroll, and evil laughter) to popular song clips.

Each sound is sent as an emoji (no words), keeping the popular visual emojis in play while bringing sound into the mix. Although emojis are meant to be light-hearted and fun, some people frown upon their use as frivolous. However, it’s no doubt that they’ve made our digital communication richer and more precise.

The introduction of emojis has changed the way humans communicate digitally, and Kenyans have not been left behind.

These colourful icons have gone from cute pictures we use while texting to images laden with meaning. They represent a variety of things; from faces, food, transportation to sports and basically everything. They have livened up conversations, and people can now communicate emotions more easily. 

Apart from WhatsApp, where emojis are commonly used, these icons are now compatible with several messaging platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, SMS and e-mails.

Happy emojing!?

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