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The Oxford Dictionaries word of the year isn’t a word

It's an emoji!

Even the most technically inept of us have probably used an emoji – those little yellow faces that convey our feelings in the way words sometimes can’t – once or twice in our time.

But for Oxford Dictionaries to declare one of the little guys the word of the year? Well, it’s an interesting choice to say the least.

The organisation said the “face with tears of joy” symbol was selected as the “word” that best captured the “ethos, mood, and preoccupations of 2015” Quartz reports.

The smiley face was “the most used emoji globally in 2015, making up 20 percent of all the emoji used in the UK in 2015, and 17 percent of those in the US.”

“You can see how traditional alphabet scripts have been struggling to meet the rapid-fire, visually focused demands of 21st century communication,” Casper Grathwohl, President of Oxford Dictionaries, told the Wall Street Journal.

“It’s not surprising that a pictographic script like emoji has stepped in to fill those gaps—it’s flexible, immediate, and infuses tone beautifully.”

Insert hand clapping emoji here.

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