Emojis in the Courtroom

Published: June 19, 2018

A Hunchly customer had sent me this interesting interview where a professor, and a defense lawyer discuss the use of emojis in the courtroom.

Much like my post on jumping to conclusions, where emojis were used, I found it interesting to hear some opinions on how emojis are showing up in court and what it means for OSINT investigations.

Emojis have been used in investigations as means to determine the tone of Tweets, Facebook posts and pretty much anywhere else that emojis are supported (which is nearly everywhere now). Most social media monitoring platforms also support queries and monitoring based solely on a particular emoji.

Even Facebook has a guide on how to determine when an emoji is to be deemed hate speech.

Like any other source of information we analyze during an investigation, it is important to remember that it is incredibly difficult to determine the real meaning behind them without having some additional context in which to frame them.

There are many websites dedicated to cataloguing and explaining the meaning behind emojis but of course the meanings can be very ambiguous, and ambiguity is the enemy of any good OSINT report.

The interview can be found below, and it is definitely worth a listen:

If you find any interesting court cases or you have any topic you would like to see appear on this blog just shoot me an email: justin@hunch.ly

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