OwO is a text based emoticon, the “O”-s depicting a pair of eyes opened in surprise, while the “w” is standing for a cute smile, similar to the “:3” emoticon, often used to express sexual attraction. It is also similar to another emoticon; o.o which depicts a look of surprise, but lacks the cuteness of the smile.
The emoticon is mostly used in chatrooms or online multiplayer games, related to furry/weeb communities or Japanese culture.
Origin of the emote
OwO has been used for expression in chatrooms and online roleplayer games, for all their existence.
We can find it in lots of memes as well, related to Japanese culture and weeaboo communities, the most widely embraced in the phrase “OwO, what’s this..?” found in lots of memes, used to depict a shy arousal.
Spread of the emote
The emoticon has a large history of use, being present since the beginning of the internet and online chatrooms. It is often seen in sites like 4chan, Reddit, Tumblr and 9gag. It is, of course still widely used in multiplayer games as well as posts on Facebook and Instagram.
Its widespread use among anime fans indicate, that it will not yet fade away.