Laughing out loud, or “lol”, has been the go to phrase to communicate amusement online (no matter how small) forever. However according to new statistics, that may no longer be the case, with many Facebook users rarely, if ever using the acronym any more, preferring more speech-like “haha” and “hehe,” as ways to let people know they at least blew a little air out of their nose.
The study, conducted by the social network, was called “The Not So Universal Language of Laughter,” and it looked into the discussion habits of the social network’s U.S. user base. It found that out of all of the possible ways people could let others know that they’d enjoyed what they just read, saw or heard, “haha” was easily the most common, with some 51.4 per cent of users using it at some point.
Comparatively, “lol” was down to just 1.9 per cent of users laughing out loud (or at least saying they were) on a regular basis. The biggest growth group as of late was emojis, which now have a 33.7 per cent share of the amusement language market.
It’s been suggested by some, namely the New Yorker, that certain forms of laughter online were for the young. Although the initial speculation that “hehe,” was something the youngsters said, it was actually found to be the opposite, with emojis enjoying the youngest median audience, while lol occupied the oldest bracket; though only by a few years.
There’s also an interesting gender split, with women using more emojis, but men much more likely to use “haha” as a form of online laughter.
The rest of the study has some other interesting trends based on geography and laugh frequency too.
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KitGuru Says: I must admit I’m still a lol user, though I’ve been know to drop a few of the others too. What about the rest of you?