AMERICAN multinational conglomerate, Facebook Inc, has released Zimbabwe’s widely used emojis as the international social media giant celebrates the World Emoji Day.
The development comes at a time when the social media conglomerate, which also owns WhatsApp and Instagram among others, has taken interest in its market base in southern Africa.
The World Emoji Day celebrated annually on July 17, looked at how emojis are being used on Facebook and Messenger.
According to data released by the social media giant to the Zimbabwe Independent three emojis were widely used in the country, over the past three months.
The three emojis include Face with Tears of Joy, Red Heart and Rolling on the Floor Laughing emojis.
They are classified between two sets of age groups.
“To celebrate World Emoji Day on Saturday, 17 July, we looked at how emojis are being used on Facebook.
“Top three emojis in Zimbabwe over the past three months by age groups: 18-24 years are, Face with Tears of Joy, Red Heart and Rolling on the Floor Laughing emojis; 25-44 years are, Face with Tears of Joy, Rolling on the Floor Laughing and Red Heart emojis,” stated Facebook via email in that order.
Facebook further revealed that there was growth in the use of emojis related to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The face with medical mask, microbe and syringe were the most used in relation to the pandemic.
Facebook stated that every month, billions of people around the world use Facebook and Messenger to connect with their families, friends and communities — often those connections come in emoji form.
“Emojis add colour, humour or vibrancy to our chats. Sometimes we rely on them to say what words can’t,” said Facebook.
In addition, Messenger launched Soundmojis recently — a new feature that enables people to send short sound clips in Messenger chat.
Users will be able to choose from a library of options that range from sound effects – crickets, clapping , drumroll , and evil laughter – to popular song clips.
Each sound is sent as an emoji (without words), providing surprising delights through culturally relevant audio clips.
“We’re launching an entire Soundmoji library for you to choose from, which we’ll update regularly with new sound effects and famous sound bites. Each sound is represented by an emoji, keeping the visual emojis we all love in play, while bringing sound into the mix,” said Facebook.
The social media giant has been increasing its visibility in the country.
It held its inaugural meeting in the country on April 7 this year after it partnered with the National Blood Services of Zimbabwe (NBSZ) in September last year to include a blond donation feature on Facebook for local potential blood donors.
Over 15 000 users had managed to make use of the feature six months after its introduction.
During its meeting with local journalists, Facebook indicated that they would be working with various State and non-State actors to combat the spread of false information — through its network of applications — that could jeopardise the integrity of the country’s forthcoming polls.— Staff Writer