Oxford Dictionaries 'Word Of The Year' Is . . . An Emoji?
We all know that life without emojis, (the small digital icons that we use for fun) would be extremely boring. Hence, it is only right that the editors of the famous Oxford English Dictionary chose the emoji with the tears of joy as its 'Word of the Year' for 2015.
The company that announced its unusual word choice on November 16th said that it was picked over several other traditional competitors. Among them were 'refugee'(难民), 'sharing economy' and 'on fleek'（棒极了）. However, it was this simple emoji that agreed with the editors because it appeared to best describe the "values, mood, and concerns of 2015."
They also thought that this was a good year to pay homage to the emoji. For though they have been around since the late 1990's, the use of the digital icons and the word that describes them, has sped up sharply this year. Besides, emojis are now used by people of all ages, not just teenagers.
Also, though the word stems from the Japanese language - e (picture), moji (character or letter), the digital icons can be understood by everyone regardless of the language they speak. For this reason it only makes sense to admit their importance to global communication.
As to how they chose from the thousands of emojis that are available? The company says that they partnered with an important mobile technology company SwiftKey to determine the most popular emoji. Turns out that 'tears of joy' is the most used icon. According to SwiftKey, it made up 17% of all emojis used in the U.S. A and an surprising 20% in the United Kingdom!
Though this is the first time the Oxford University Press has chosen an image for its 'word of the year', it is not the first time they have tried to include modern language into their 150-year-old publication. In 2013, to admit that photographic self-portraits were popular, the editors chose 'selfie,' for the 'Word of the Year'!
1. Which is the reason that the emoji with the tears of joy was picked instead of a word?
2. What does the underlined phrase “pay homage to” mean?
3. Why was theemoji with the tears of the joy chosen from thousands of emojis?
4. Which is the first modern word chosen as the “Word of the Year?
5. What is the main idea of the passage?