What we can learn about gesture by studying emoji
Emoji aren't a language, but they're clearly adding something useful to communication. What is it? In this talk, which is joint work with Lauren Gawne (La Trobe), a theoretical framework is brought together from gesture studies with a massive corpus of authentic emoji use to discuss three main categories of how people use emoji, based on a combination of their form and their function: pragmatic emblems, co-speech emphasis, and playful pantomime. More broadly speaking, it is argued that looking at the linguistic styles of the internet can give us new insight into how language both on- and offline.