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This year’s Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year has caused consternation amongst some word-lovers.
The “tears of joy” emoji was announced as the Word of the Year by Oxford Dictionaries on Twitter earlier this week, with some users expressing their dismay with replies such as “RIP language”.
The emoji, which many people have pointed out is not even a word, is used online and in text to express happiness.
Oxford Dictionaries countered the critics by attempting to justify their decision, saying: “Pictographic script like emoji [are] flexible, immediate, and infuses tone beautifully. Emoji are becoming an increasingly rich form of communication, one that transcends linguistic borders.”
The tech company SwiftKey conducted research earlier this year to discover that the “tears of joy” emoji was the most regularly used globally last year.