Sunday, 10 June 2012


I just made up a word. I happened to need a word to describe the gifs that some kids make of themselves to express the way they feel about a thing, and I picked emotigif.

Actually, those of you who spend less time pootling around on the internet than I do will need some kind of explanation here.

On Tumblr, which is a blogging site which is mostly devoted to teenagers endlessly reblogging each other's inane cute/humorous images, telling the world about their love of Matt Smith/Benedict Cumberbatch and delivering expletive-laden diatribes on other people's inability to use the words you're and your correctly, people like to express their feelings on a subject by adding a gif (a simple moving image on a short loop) to their post. This is a gif which in no way expresses my feelings:

These gifs are commonly snippets of films or TV programmes, with a close up of an actor or celebrity making some kind of easily-interpreted facial expression or action (sometimes with speech which is usually also provided in writing). Like this:

Anyway, sometimes people apparently feel that there isn't a gif that expresses their emotions well enough. This is commonly when they need to express the emotion 'Yeah bitch, I'm totally right about this trivial issue in a really camp way and will therefore do a stereotypical camp finger-pointy head-waggly shoulder-shrugging movement shot at a bad angle that makes it obvious that this is taken with the substandard camera on my laptop in bad light in my bedroom and put it on the internet'. Like this:

This, my friends, is an emotigif. Based on emoticon, obviously. I learnt in the process of researching this post that they are already called 'reaction gifs', but my name is better.


  1. I think I've heard people use 'reaction gif' to describe any gif used as the sole response to a post -- so things like your Conan above would still qualify. Sounds like there's a current lexical gap for the subsection you want to call emotigifs!

  2. That suits me - emotigifs it is, for just those which express one's emotion. Now to set about getting the world to use it.