But it is also a symbol in heavy metal music and subculture. In some European cultures it suggests infidelity or Satanic association.
In China and Hong Kong it actually means ‘7.’ These communities can count up to over 20 using a single hand.
The “O.K.” sign
USA, UK, Ireland, Germany - OK
Brazil - a vagina
South of France - worthless
Japan - money
“V” sign – note that the palm is facing outward!
USA - peace
UK and Ireland - victory
Japan - hello
USA, UK and Ireland - OK, good
Germany - OK, good, the number 1
Japan - the number 5
Australia and Nigeria - “up yours” – a rude gesture
“V” sign with palm facing inward
UK, Ireland and South Africa - a very rude gesture
Hook ’em horns
USA - a greeting for sports teams
Italy - “Your spouse is cheating on you.”
Venezuela - Good luck!
Be aware and respectful. If you don’t understand a gesture, ask politely what it means. If you feel you have insulted someone, apologise.
- Could you explain that hand gesture to me? We don’t have it in Germany.
- I don’t understand what that means. Can you explain it to me?
- I’m sorry, have I done something I shouldn’t have?