The emoticon turns 25 years old today.
From Straits Times:
“Prof Fahlman posted the emoticon in a message to an online electronic bulletin board at 11.44am on Sept 19, 1982, during a discussion about the limits of online humour and how to denote comments meant to be taken lightly.
‘I propose the following character sequence for joke markers: :-),’ he wrote. ‘Read it sideways.’ The suggestion gave computer users a way to convey humour or positive feelings with a smile – or the opposite sentiments by reversing the parenthesis to form a frown.”