Facebook just conducted a deep data analysis of how Americans indicate when they are laughing online… and the company’s researchers found something interesting. The way you laugh online is strongly connected to where you live.
New York, Florida, and (interestingly enough) Wyoming prefer using emojis to express laughter, according to researchers Udi Weinsberg, Lada Adamic, and Mike Develin. In Texas and the South, LOL is most common, while “haha” and “hehe” are used more frequently on the West Coast. There is also a gender breakdown: women prefer emojis, while male Facebook users prefer “haha” somewhat.
The research was based on anonymized Facebook posts and comments, and builds on top of a New Yorker article by Sarah Larson asking why we prefer to say “haha” or “hehe” online.