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'Abused emoji' give kids an easy way to talk about serious issues

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Some situations are just too hard to put into words even if you're the most eloquent person on the planet. So just imagine how tough it is for kids in troubled homes to tell someone, anyone, what they're going through. A Swedish non-profit for children's rights called BRIS believes one way to get them to open up is through emoticons -- that's why the organization has created a special set for them called "Abused Emoji." At first glance, they look like the usual light-hearted, sometimes silly, smileys you see on phones or computers, but a closer inspection will reveal some rather disquieting details.

(WARNING: The image and video below the fold show representations of child abuse in emoji form.)

Some of the graphics have a black eye, others show injury, while the most disconcerting ones suggest that the adult in the kid's life is making him/her miserable. The group's director of communication, Sylvia Ernhagen, told Wired:

Kids issues range from issues about how to fit in or feeling awkward to really dark and heartbreaking stories about violence, sexual abuse, grooming, bullying and suicidal thoughts... Emoji are a very natural way for children and teenagers to communicate, and we want to show that there's nothing wrong with reaching out when you feel down.

However, since the pack can be downloaded by anyone with an iOS device, at least one person is worried that the graphics can be misused. According to Wired, Gregory Leskin, the director for the NCTSN Military and Veteran Families Program, fears that the emojis could be misconstrued. After all, not everyone's trained to talk to kids from troubled homes like the folks from BRIS are. Still, he believes creating the set "is going in the right direction," seeing as more and more people these days are expressing their thoughts using the ideograms.

Via: Wired
Source: BRIS, Abused Emojis
In this article: app, emoji, ios, mobilepostcross
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