2O9hj-xqNOa3bdaSOyf8axH6Qp0 Mommy Mayonnaise: The Exclamation Point

Dec 20, 2009

The Exclamation Point

I think we all should be careful of what and how we write about anything before sending it to someone else. When you don’t see that other person directly, still she/he can figure out your mood or your emotion while write those words to her/him. I know when someone mad at me just from the way they wrote me. That’s called individual perception. There are some many different perceptions can be made from a single sentence we wrote. Some considered it as a fun, while some other consider it as harassment. It’s because they can only try to get your point from a sentence. That all. You don’t face them directly to explain it in detail. So, we need to make sure of what we’re going to write down before everyone see it and start to build their own perception about it.

That is why a lot of people choose to use emoticons. I am a kind of person who loves to use emoticon in almost every sentence I wrote on your shout box during my blogwalking. I realize that there is a big possibility that some of you will get a different perception of what I’m talking about if I don’t use emoticon there. This is cyber world. You can’t see me and I can’t see you. So we need to use a correct bride to connect us each other. We need to have a universal sign that can be fully understood even if we don’t see each other. Otherwise, we will face a misunderstanding shortly.

Let’s talk about exclamation point. This simple sign can cause a misunderstanding between two people who can not see each other. Please compare these two sentences below, fellas. I made this sentence as an analogy of what I’m trying to tell you about.
Imagine if someone sent you an email with this sentence on it.

”I already sent you a text message this morning. Take a look at your cell phone!”
compare with
”I already sent you a text message this morning. Take a look at your cell phone

Can you see the perceptions that might be appear after reading this sentence?

The second sentence looks exactly like the first one except on the final signs. The first one ended by an exclamation point, meanwhile the second one ended by a winking emoticon.

I think the first sentence is more like a command and show me how the sender was in a bad mood.

The sender also shows impatience and a bit annoyed. There is no sign of jokes on it. The exclamation point may even show this sentence is an order that you must follow as soon as possible. Otherwise, you will get punished. I’m telling you, there’s nothing funny about this sentence even if the sender was your fiancé, right?

Meanwhile, even if we used exactly the same words on the second sentence we can find a different kind of perception. The wink emoticon sign has dulcified the sign of command on it. In fact, this emoticon also asked the reader to smile. We still can find an admonition on it but also the feeling that that admonition was sent by a friend. So we don’t need to feel offended at all. What do you think?

That’s why I always try to avoid using this exclamation point on my articles, unless I want to reinforce the command meaning inside it of course. I have a kind of article like this here. Otherwise, I would never use that sign at all. When I need to use the exclamation pont to reinforce the main message, I will also give the emoticon sign along with it. So that nobody will get the wrong perception of that sentence. Such as:

”Merry Christmas everyone!”

Have a great sunday, fellas.


  1. I like this, Risma. I get it, I've to be more careful now...

  2. Frankly, I don't use emoticon very much. Well, maybe only when I'm chatting. I personally prefer to read sentences and words than seeing emoticons. Sometimes even emoticon can't send the real message as we want it. I still think that words choice is the best way in expressing our thoughts and feelings.

  3. very well said.

    misunderstanding, very true to text messaging. i have personal experiences to this especially with the oldies. well, some also to younger ones who are not as aware with the use of punctuations, and probably with overly short-cutting the words and phrases leading to misunderstanding.

    your website will be taken care of, .com it is ;)


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