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These Creepy, Real-Life Emojis Warn of Online “Stranger Danger”

By Sabrina James |

Ah, emjois. The oh-so-popular, modern-day hieroglyphics containing almost a thousand tiny images of yellow smileys, food, and cartoonish animals, describe our feelings in ways words (and even acronyms) cannot. Excited for a night out with your friends? There’s an emoji for that! Clinking beer mugs, a dancing lady in a red dress, a pair of high heels, send. Message effectively conveyed. Someone post an adorable picture of a baby? Red heart, pink heart, blue heart, send. She’ll feel the love on her Instagram feed, no words required. But if you want to stop parents dead in their tracks, to warn of the frightening real-life stranger danger that exists in our kids’ virtual worlds, you’re outta luck. No combination of smileys had that kind of impact — until now.

Enter Innocence en Danger, an international non-profit group focused on preventing the sexual abuse of children. They partnered with Rosapark to create a jarring European ad campaign featuring photoshopped versions of real-life emojis that ask a simple question: Who’s really chatting with your child online? The answer, according to these ads, which will appear in newspapers, magazines, and bus stations in Paris, might just terrify you. Like the originals they emulate, these emojis relay their intended message loud and clear, no words necessary.

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The beanie-wearing, hipster emoji winks while blowing a big, wet kiss straight into our nightmares.*shudder*

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This tank top-wearing recreation of the winking, bug-eyed, tongue-out emoji pretty much guarantees that we’ll never use the original version again. Ever.

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A gray-haired, business man version of the “laughing so hard I’m crying” emoji, proves online creeps can be any age (and that noses are really important to faces).


Photos via Innocence en Danger

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About Sabrina James


Sabrina James

Sabrina is an editor at large at Babble covering news, social issues, and buzz-worthy parenting topics. Her work has been featured in national print and online publications including CNN, Parenting, The Huffington Post, Parents, AOL, MSN, Yahoo! Shine, and Babytalk. Sabrina is a an unapologetic introvert, the mother of an only child, and a self-diagnosed pop culture savant. Read bio and latest posts → Read Sabrina's latest posts →

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