It doesn’t take much to get canceled these days so sometimes when you’ve made some kind of error, it’s best to just get out ahead of it before the online frothiness and handwringing can even get under way. That’s the case with Jennifer Love Hewitt who jumped on Instagram live to offer an apology for her, wait for it, use of emojis she’d been sending over the last couple of years. It seems she had been using one of them in error which would have completely changed the nature of certain messages being sent. Whether this is more of a PSA or apology isn’t clear here, but Jennifer Love Hewitt was fine to jump in front of it early just in case.
Apparently, Jennifer Love Hewitt had misunderstood the meaning of the folded hands emoji. While it can appear that these are two hands praying, the other interpretation is that they are also two hands coming together for a high five. The difference here in how these are used would be important when sending certain kinds of messages, something that Love Hewitt admitted on Instagram. She said, in part, “I thought that the hands that are together in the emoji section of the phone, I thought those were prayer hands. I have, for a very long time, been sending those to people when I pray for them, when I pray for their family members or their situations, particularly during COVID. Praying, sending goodness, love, light.”
Jennifer Love Hewitt doesn’t appear to be the only one to have made this mistake if it’s a mistake at all when it comes to this particular emoji. A fierce (I use this term as sarcastically as possible) debate rages over what the two yellow hands coming together really means. Keith Broni, a senior emoji researcher (this is his real title) spoke about this (via aa.com) and said that the original intention meant to be folding hands, not a high-five. At first, there was a halo of light around the hands that would have implied something like prayer, but Apple took those out in 2015, only leading to more “confusion”. It would appear that there is enough latitude with this emoji that multiple meanings can exist. Unlike your grandparent who accidentally thinks that LOL means “lots of love” instead of hearty laughter in response to something serious, Love Hewitt might be off the hook here.
When she isn’t making massive, massive errors in her emoji use, Jennifer Love Hewitt is starring in Fox’s 9-1-1. The Ryan Murphy production series follows first responders in the Los Angeles area and has been generally well-received by both fans and critics. Love Hewitt joined the show in its second season as Maddie Buckley, a 911 operator. The series also stars Angela Bassett, Peter Krause, and Oliver Stark. A spin-off has already been out there as well with Rob Lowe in the lead.
Following a meteoric rise in the late 90s and early 2000s with roles in Party of Five and I Know What You Did Last Summer, Jennifer Love Hewitt had been taking it a bit easy on the big and small screen in recent years before 9-1-1. She took the break to focus on raising her children, something that had been difficult while starring on Criminal Minds. The current season of 9-1-1 is currently underway.