Decoding Emojis: Unraveling the Secret Language of Cocaine in Online Gaming Chatrooms

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Drugs are being sold to minors online. In a secret code that appears harmless to the untrained eye, young kids and their dealers use emojis in chatrooms and on social media to talk about drugs and how to buy them. Parents must understand the emoji language and watch for signs that their children are using it. As teen drug overdoses have increased, the need to uncover potential problem behaviors is even more critical.

Emojis appear on smartphones and in chatrooms everywhere, including popular video games that have become the platform of choice for a new type of drug trafficking. According to the DEA, cartels have been going increasingly online to sell drugs and recruit dealers. Drug dealers use emojis to communicate with their buyers about the quality, potency, and cost of the drugs they are selling. It is a form of advertising that is difficult to police because it uses symbols instead of words and can be done away from public view.

One such cartel is the Mexican Sinaloa Cartel, led by Joaquin Guzman Loera, aka El Chapo. The cartel has been a significant player in the marijuana, poppy cultivation, and cocaine sales business in Mexico and has been involved in numerous violent incidents. The group has also developed a presence on social media, reaching vast audiences with videos, stories, and images that showcase their machismo. The Sinaloa Cartel is especially active on Instagram and Snapchat, where its members post coded messages in video games that they play with each other. The DEA has analyzed these videos and found that many of the messages contain symbols used by drug dealers to discuss their drug sales.

The DEA has created an online guide to help raise awareness and educate the public about this new type of drug dealing. This guide lists several common emojis used to represent different drugs and their potency, as well as an explanation of their meaning. The list includes a car, a shopping cart, and a pill emoji to symbolize prescription medications such as Xanax, Oxycodone, Percocet, and Adderall. There are also a variety of other emojis to indicate fentanyl, methamphetamine, and heroin.

Key Emoji Means Cocaine

A snowflake, blowfish, snowman, diamond, or eight-ball emoji signifies cocaine. The DEA has also found that some of the famous “candy” or candy-like emojis can be used to signify meth or a fake prescription pill. Purple emojis are used to indicate cough syrup or ketamine, while bottles and crystal balls are used to indicate MDMA/Ecstasy, which is a drug that makes users feel happy.

These emojis are often used with text or voice chats and can be hard to detect. Parents should watch for them and be ready to intervene if they see their child using them in an online gaming chatroom or elsewhere on social media. If there is a reason to suspect that your child is dealing drugs, you should contact law enforcement immediately.


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