An Emoji Held At Gunpoint Is A Legitimate Death Threat, Says The Law

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It’s the end of the world as we know it, folks. If you make a death threat using emojis, the person you threatened may have a case against you in a court of law. That gun emoji and the little guy with Xs for eyes can now get you into a lot of trouble. Dafuq they exist for, then? And does a text message consisting of the bathtub and an electric outlet count as a real suicide note? Because if that’s the case, my friends should have been seriously concerned about me for awhile now.

The gravity of threatening smiley faces was brought to our attention the other day, when this photo was posted to Instagram.

Emoji Death

For those of you who can’t decipher the text here, I’ll translate. Writer Fletcher Babb recently learned that people were purchasing a drug called “lean” on Instagram, and decided it would make for an interesting story to pose as a person who was interested in the narcotic. He got in contact with a drug dealer, made an arrangement, and pulled out at the last minute. The drug dealer got angry, screenshotted Babb’s Instagram account, and posted the photo, complaining that the man had backed out of their deal. Because he used “threatening” emojis, the drug dealer could be charged as having made a legitimate death threat.

Personally, I think the man should be charged with dealing drugs instead of with a death threat. I’ve used those emojis in combination hundreds of times. Emojis are the least serious form of communication possible. If I use the crying emoji, I’m not really crying. If I use the flamenco dancer, I haven’t really become a flamenco dancer. If I use the winking, kissing, heart emoji, I haven’t really just developed a large, blistering herpe on my lip. And when I tried sexting the boy I just met using the slutty emojis, he definitely didn’t think it was sexy.

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But, the law’s the law, I suppose. Oh well.

[via Time]

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Veronica Ruckh

Veronica (@VeronicaRuckh) is the Director of Total Sorority Move for Grandex, Inc. After having spent her undergraduate years drinking $4 double LITs on a patio and drunk texting away potential suitors, she managed to graduate with an impressive GPA and an unimpressive engagement ring -- so unimpressive, in fact, some might say it's not there at all. Veronica has since been fulfilling her duties as "America's big," a title she gave to herself with the help of her giant ego. She has recently switched from vodka to wine on weekdays. Email her at

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