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Back in the day, the internet ran on ASCII, and we liked it that way. If you couldn’t find it on a keyboard, why, it just wasn’t a character and that was that.

Back before the day, we had Commodore 64s, and while communication could involve all sorts of crazy glyphs and wingdings, at least these strange abominations were available on the keyboard. Rules were rules.

Today, nobody feels :) and no one is :/ or :o with that. Instead, today’s netizens express themselves in single UTF-8 characters, never before seen on a keyboard, which to me is :(, but I guess it makes them ☺. If you tilt your head to the left, you can see that people’s moods now live sideways—there’s no way to really balance one’s mood with a single character. It does, however, allow you to squeeze an extra emotion or two in edgewise in Twitter.

Our brave new 140 character world may have lost its soul, but it’s gained a ♥.

If you’re ready to let go of your keyboard and move beyond the past, TwitterKeys has a number of handy UTF-8 characters that you can paste into your Tweets. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.