Happy 30th Anniversary to the Smiley Face Emoticon

by in Creative

Tags: E-mailTrendsSmiley FaceEmoticon

Today marks the 30th anniversary of the famous smiley face emoticon making its debut into today’s modern language, when Professor Scott Fahiman of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh posted a message that included the sideways smiley using an open bracket and colon :-).

His reason for using the smiley was to make it easier for people to distinguish the tone between emails that were meant to be humorous, and those that weren’t. The professor posted a message to an electronic message board on September 19, 1982 at 11:44am, and in it he wrote

I propose the following character sequence for joke markers: :-) Read it sideways.


The smiley face idea went global within months, and today several variations can be found across multiple devices.

Share your favorite smiley face below!