I had a co-worker that was training me once. When she would answer internal instant messages from other people within the company she would roll her eyes, have a snarky remark, and throw in one of these at the end of her response ” 🙂 “. So then every time after that when she would respond to me with a smiley face, I just pictured her gritting her teeth behind her keyboard while typing.
I know it can be hard to get the tone right when people are not speaking face to face, especially if there’s limited space available. I recently gave a compliment to someone in my Words with Friends chat after they had a high scoring move. They asked if I was being sarcastic.
I have noticed that smiley face on social media threads and blog comments, sometimes mine and sometimes someone else’s, creeping up after someone obviously wrote something condensing or hateful. I try not to write or type anything that I wouldn’t actually say to someone’s face. In person and otherwise I am okay with thoughtful conversations, differing opinions, standing up for myself. I always try to be respectful though.
I wonder if people who use the smiley face passive aggressively are the same people that say exactly what they mean, and then they follow up with an “I’m kidding.” Or I wonder why they don’t just own what they type and leave the smiley face off.
What do you think?