In normal face to face conversation you have all sorts of clues about the speaker's meaning beyond the words themselves. You have facial expression, body movement, tone of voice etc to let you know if he is joking/serious/sarcastic. Online, we are deprived of these cues, and emoticons are an attempt to simulate them.Fatcat said:I make it a point never to use emoticons. They're stupid-looking and pointless.
Mjr. Whoopass said:"The Last Starfighter has the best special effects ever" You would think I thought that
"The Last Starfighter has the best special effects ever " which lets you know I'm only kidding.