ec2-35-172-195-49.compute-1.amazonaws.com | ToothyWiki | Japanese | RecentChanges | Login | Webcomic These are like normal smilies, but read the right way up (apparently). There are a few web pages about them around the place:
It's a part of the 'oh god I hate those llamas on BattleNet?' culture. If there's anything more sure to annoy a gamer than being thoroughly thrashed by a kid who doesn't speak english, it's having that kid continually spam the chat channel with kitty smilies.
Oh... okay. *shrug* I met one or two such during my days on BattleNet?, but not particularly notable numbers. I had a few fun games against French kids though, dusting off my GCSE French. Still, the use of Japanese smileys is extremely widespread on the net (as I'm sure you know?), so the association with StarCraft might be a bit confusing to most people... --AC
It seems (to me) to be limited to anime/manga sites (obvious) then spread to gaming sites (via the aforementioned StarCraft vector) and is just now infiltrating WebComics. Evil. Then again, I mostly avoid blogs and mainstream sites generally avoid smileys of every sort. Note - I don't, nor have ever, played StarCraft - but there was a lot of "Argh what does this mean, is he insulting me?" (only, you know, written with less grammar and more l33t) on the net about it ;)
^-^ - Kitty ;actually, I thought that was a very smug smily - SunKitten
Other feline smileys include =^.^= , =>^.^<= , =^+.+^=, =^..^=
^^ - Bunny (what about /_/=+.+=\_\ ..? - MoonShadow)
This is also the "abbreviated" version of the normal ^_^ or ^.^ smiley. Like the difference between :-) and :) .
That got confused - /_/=+.+=\_\ as an abbreviation ;) Big bunny art is just going too too far. Adding whiskers to the kitty is still small enough to be smiley though, I think.
^x^ - exceptionally cute or dead kitty (you can't tell the difference? You'll never make it as a vet... :)
>.< , >_< - ouch, pain <_< , >_> - "eehhhhh", "yeswell", "let's just ignore that"... can anyone provide a better description in words of these rather expressive symbols? ^.~ , ^.- - wink