Don't Worry, A Millennial Has Just Explained How Gen Z Is Using Emojis

Rae Batchelor
Two screenshots of a TikTok.
TikTok | @genwhyscarlett

I used to laugh at my parents when they would fall behind on technology. If they couldn't figure out the DVD player, or I had to show them how to log in to their email, or if they kept misusing LOL as "Lots of love," I felt a bit morally superior, and I also thought that that would never, ever happen to me.

Time makes fools of us all.

I always thought I had a grip on how emojis were used.

The emoji keyboard.

You know, the crying-laughing emoji means you're laughing so hard you're crying. The eggplant emoji means... you're craving eggplant. Pretty basic stuff.

But it turns out that Gen Z has been using emojis a lot differently than we have. Thankfully, TikTok user @genwhyscarlett, who's a millennial that's been living amongst Gen Z kids at college, has taken to TikTok to explain the differences in our emoji usage, and some are pretty shocking.

For example, if you've seen a Gen Z kid using the baseball hat emoji, they're not talking about fashion.

Someone next to the ballcap emoji.
TikTok | @genwhyscarlett

"This one means 'I'm lying,' or 'I'm not lying,' it could mean both, or either," Scarlett revealed, referencing the slang "capping" or "cap" for someone who's lying. It's a ball cap emoji, it's referencing capping. See? Scarlett also explained that the skull emoji is the new laughing emoji, for when something "is so funny, that I died laughing."

Scarlett shared that Gen Z has found a great way to communicate feeling really awkward.

Someone standing next to the emoji of a standing man.
TikTok | @genwhyscarlett

Using the "standing man" emoji, Gen Z has communicated the awkward feeling of standing around uncomfortably in a situation you feel weird in via emoji, which is something I didn't know I needed until just now.

Who knew that emojis could be a whole new language?

If you want to see what emojis you've been using wrong, you can check out Scarlett's video right here.

Scarlett has tons of content bridging the generational divide for any millennial like me that's afraid of getting too old to understand the kids when they're talking. And that's no cap.

(Am I using that right?)

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