The use of emojis by the French and the Americans: what are the differences?

Adobe’s study analyzes the importance of emojis in various fields: self-expression and identity, diversity, equity and inclusion, professional communications… This survey is based on the responses of 10,000 people in France (1,000 respondents), in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Australia and South Korea. Focus on the differences and commonalities of French and Americans regarding their uses and perceptions of emojis.

The favorite emojis of French and American users

The Adobe study established the top 5 favorite emojis of French and Americans. French and American users have the same emoji nΒ°1 but the two rankings are then different for the other places on the podium.

The top 5 favorite emojis of French users:

  1. πŸ˜‚
  2. 😘
  3. 🀣
  4. πŸ˜‰
  5. πŸ‘πŸ»

The top 5 favorite emojis of American users:

  1. πŸ˜‚
  2. πŸ‘πŸ»
  3. ❀️
  4. 🀣
  5. 😒

Emojis are more used in France in the professional context than in the United States…

According to the study, 74% of French people surveyed say they use emojis in a professional setting. A higher rate than that of American users (71%). However, 53% of French and Americans agree that their use of emojis has intensified in the past 12 months.

On the one hand, French users overwhelmingly think that emojis allow them to build better relationships with new recruits (75% against 68% of Americans). On the other hand, American users are more likely to think that emojis can stimulate creativity at work (58% against 51% of French people).

But Americans are more concerned about inclusivity when it comes to emojis

Another divergence between the Americans and the French: the question of inclusivity. Indeed, 83% of American users believe that emojis should continue to be more inclusive and representative (compared to 77% of French). A result supported by the release of version 15.0 of Unicode which offers emojis which illustrate different cultures, with in particular the arrival of emojis maracas, flute, Khanda or fan. Inclusivity was already at the heart of Unicode version 14.0, in particular with the appearance of a non-gendered and pregnant character.

Additionally, 71% of Americans say inclusive emojis spark positive discussions about important cultural and societal issues, compared to 67% of French people.

Emojis promote empathy and understanding for French and Americans

French and American users agree on one point, however: emojis encourage empathy and mutual understanding. Thus, 94% of French people and 92% of Americans believe that emojis overcome the language barrier.

Another important information: 88% of French and American users say they feel more empathy for someone who uses emojis. For 78% of French people, emojis are an important communication tool to promote unity, respect and mutual understanding, compared to 71% of Americans.

France and the United States agree on the misunderstanding of certain emojis

Another point on which the French and the Americans agree: the difficulty of understanding certain emojis. Thus, France and the United States share the same top 3 least understood emojis:

  1. 🀠
  2. πŸ’
  3. πŸ™ƒ

The study also highlights a generational trend of hijacking the primary meaning of emojis among 74% of Gen Z users, compared to 65% of Gen Y, 48% of Gen X and 24% of Baby Boomers.

Source: Adobe

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