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The Use and Meaning of Internet Slang: Abbreviations and Acronyms

Published Monday, June 19, 2006

If you are a regular internet user you will no doubt have encountered various internet slang on forums, chat rooms, emails, blogs and instant messaging that use acronyms and some fancy abbreviations to bring across certain messages. Internet slang is a very casual speech in writing that uses certain words, phrases or expressions in the form of abbreviations to convey a message which may be vivid and concise, sarcastic, racy, humorous or even vulgar in meaning. Internet slang consists of a word formed from the initial letter or letters of a series of words in a phrase. This means it is an abbreviation of the first letters of a phrase or a long phrase that may form a word which may also convey a message. However, most of the internet slang are not actually acronyms since they don’t form a word which can be pronounced.

Internet slang originated with the purpose of saving keystrokes and thus time. It uses common words or phrases that helps one to keep their message concise and to the point. In electronic communication this method of writing shorthand dramatically short-cuts various common words and phrases in text messaging using the cell phone. Also, the popular communication platform of instant messaging services such as AOL, ICQ, MSN, Yahoo and others have allowed this internet language of slang using acronyms and abbreviations by internet users to develop and spread rapidly over the years. This internet language developed by internet users over the years is very popular and needless to say quite is frequent in emails, forums, text messaging and chat rooms which is typically the environment (community) it is used in, and brevity of communication has a high place value. Internet slang is usually often written in lower case letters with capitals letters reserved for emphasis.

Internet slang is considered unsuitable for formal communication. They can be annoying and unprofessional in formal settings. They should therefore be used conservatively and in the right or appropriate setting such as amongst your friends and other similar groups.

Parents can find the meaning of internet slang helpful when monitoring their kids on the internet. Internet slang is a common language that is also used by many kids and teens to chat online. To the untrained eye internet slang may be difficult to interpret or decipher. Now however, you can know the meaning behinds these acronyms (slang) and word abbreviations. Your child might even be surprised that you know some of these “secret meanings” behind some of these internet slang.

The list below is by no means a comprehensive list but it should however help you to decipher many common internet slang thus, clarifying the meaning behind the acronyms (slang) and word abbreviations that you will come across on; blogs, forums, email, chat rooms and instant message.

A
AAMOF as a matter of fact
ABFL a big fat lady
ABT about
ADN any day now
AFAIC as far as I'm concerned
AFAICT as far as I can tell
AFAICS as far as I can see
AFAIK as far as I know
AFAYC as far as you're concerned
AFK away from keyboard
AISI as I see it
AIUI as I understand it
AKA also known as
AML all my love
ANFSCD and now for something completely different
ASAP as soon as possible
ASL assistant section leader
ASL age, sex, location
ASLP age, sex, location, picture
A/S/L age/sex/location
ASOP assistant system operator
ATM at this moment
AWA as well as
AWHFY are we having fun yet?
AWGTHTGTTA are we going to have to go trough this again?
AWOL absent without leave
AWOL away without leave
AYOR at your own risk
AYPI? and your point is?
B
B4 before
B4N bye for now
BAC back at computer
BAG busting a gut
BAK back at the keyboard
BBIAB be back in a bit
BBL be back later
BBLBNTSBO... be back later but not to soon because of...
BBR burnt beyond repair
BBS be back soon
BBS bulletin board system
BC be cool
B/C because
BCnU be seeing you
BEG big evil grin
BF boyfriend
B/F boyfriend
BFN bye for now
BG big grin
BIH Burn In Hell
BION believe it or not
BIOYIOB blow it out your I/O port
BITMT but in the meantime
BM bite me
BMB bite my bum
BMTIPG brilliant minds think in parallel gutters
BKA better known as
BL belly laughing
BOB back off bastard
BOL be on later
BOM bitch of mine
BOT back on topic
BRB be right back
BRBB be right back *****
BRBS be right back soon
BRH be right here
BRS big red switch
BS big smile
BS bull ****
BSF but seriously folks
BST but seriously though
BTA but then again
BTAIM be that as it may
BTDT been there done that
BTOBD be there or be dead
BTOBS be there or be square
BTSOOM beats the **** out of me
BTW by the way
BUDWEISER because you deserve what every individual should ever receive
BWQ buzz word quotient
BWTHDIK but what the heck do I know
BYOB bring your own bottle
BYOH Bat You Onna Head
B& Banned
C
C&G chuckle and grin
CAD ctrl-alt-delete
CADET can't add, doesn't even try
CDIWY couldn't do it without you
CD9 code 9 - parents are around
CFV call for votes
CFS care for secret?
CFY calling for you
CID crying in disgrace
CLM career limiting move
CM@TW catch me at the web
CMIIW correct me if I'm wrong
CNP continue in next post
CO conference
CRAFT can't remember a ******* thing
CRS can't remember ****
CSG chuckle snicker grin
CTS changing the subject
CU see you
CU2 see you too
CUL see you later
CUL8R see you later
CWOT complete waste of time
CWYL chat with you later
CYA see ya
CYA cover your ***
CYAL8R see ya later
CYO see you online
D
DBA doing business as
DCed disconnected
DFLA disenhanced four-letter acronym
DH darling husband
DIIK darn if i know
DGA digital guardian angel
DGARA don't give a rats ***
DIKU do I know you?
DIRTFT do it right the first time
DITYID did I tell you I'm distressed
DIY do it yourself
DL download
DL dead link
DLTBBB don't let the bed bugs bite
DMMGH don't make me get hostile
DQMOT don't quote me on this
DND do not disturb
DTC darn this computer
DTRT do the right thing
DUCT did you see that?
DWAI don't worry about it
DWIM do what I mean
DWIMC do what I mean, correctly
DWISNWID do what I say, not what I do
DYJHIW don't you just hate it when...
DYK do you know
E
EAK eating at keyboard
EIE enough is enough
EG evil grin
EMFBI excuse me for butting in
EMFJI excuse me for jumping in
EMSG email message
EOD end of discussion
EOF end of file
EOL end of lecture
EOM end of message
EOS end of story
EOT end of thread
ETLA extended three letter acronym
EYC excitable, yet calm
F
F female
F/F face to face
F2F face to face
FAQ frequently asked questions
FAWC for anyone who cares
FBOW for better or worse
FBTW fine, be that way
FCFS first come, first served
FCOL for crying out loud
FIFO first in, first out
FISH first in, still here
FLA four-letter acronym
FOAD **** off and die
FOAF friend of a friend
FOB **** off *****
FOC free of charge
FOCL falling of chair laughing
FOFL falling on the floor laughing
FOS freedom of speech
FOTCL falling of the chair laughing
FTF face to face
FTTT from time to time
FU ****** up
FUBAR ****** up beyond all recognition
FUDFUCT fear, uncertainty and doubt
FUCT failed under continuous testing
FURTB full up ready to burst (about hard disk drives)
FW freeware
FWIW for what it's worth
FYA for your amusement
FYEO for your eyes only
FYE for your entertainment
FYEO for your eyes only
FYI for your information
G
G grin
G2B going to bed
G&BIT grin & bear it
G2G got to go
G2GGS2D got to go get something to drink
G2GTAC got to go take a crap
G2GTAP got to go take a pee
GA go ahead
GA good afternoon
GAFIA get away from it all
GAL get a life
GAS greetings and salutations
GBH great big hug
GBH&K great big huh and kisses
GBR garbled beyond recovery
GBY god bless you
GD&H grinning, ducking and hiding
GD&R grinning, ducking and running
GD&RAFAP grinning, ducking and running as fast as possible
GD&REF&F grinning, ducking and running even further and faster
GD&RF grinning, ducking and running fast
GD&RVF grinning, ducking and running very
GD&W grin, duck and wave
GDW grin, duck and wave
GE good evening
GF girlfriend
GFETE grinning from ear to ear
GFN gone for now
GFU good for you
GG good game
GGU2 good game you too
GIGO garbage in garbage out
GJ good job
GL good luck
GL&GH good luck and good hunting
GM good morning / good move / good match
GMAB give me a break
GMAO giggling my *** off
GMBO giggling my butt off
GNBLFY got nothing but love for you
GMTA great minds think alike
GN good night
GNOC get naked on cam (webcam)
GOK god only knows
GOWI get on with it
GPF general protection fault
GR8 great
GR&D grinning, running and ducking
GtG got to go
GTSY glad to see you
H
H hug
H8 Hate (H1 - H9 indicating levels of hate)
H/O hold on
H&K hug and kiss
HAK hug and kiss
HAGD have a good day
HAGN have a good night
HAGS have a good summer
HAG1 have a good one
HAHA having a heart attack
HAND have a nice day
HB hug back
HB hurry back
HDYWTDT how do you work this darn thing
HF have fun
HH holding hands
HHIS hanging head in shame
HHJK ha ha, just kidding
HHOJ ha ha, only joking
HHOK ha ha, only kidding
HHOS ha ha, only seriously
HIH hope it helps
HILIACACLO help I lapsed into a coma and can't log off
HIWTH hate it when that happens
HLM he loves me
HMS home made smiley
HMS hanging myself
HMT here's my try
HMWK homework
HOAS hold on a second
HSIK how should i know
HSWM have sx with me
HTH hope this helps
HTHBE hope this has been enlightening
HYLMS hate you like my sister
I
IAAA I am an accountant
IAAL I am a lawyer
IAC in any case
IC I see
IAE in any event
IAG it's all good
IAG I am gay
IAIM in an Irish minute
IANAA I am not an accountant
IANAL I am not a lawyer
IBN I'm buck naked
ICOCBW I could of course be wrong
IDC I don't care
IDGI I don't get it
IDGARA I don't give a rat's ***
IDGW in a good way
IDI I doubt it
IDK I don't know
IDTT I'll drink to that
IFVB I feel very bad
IGP I gotta pee
IGTP I get the point
IHTFP I hate this ******* place
IHTFP I have truly found paradise
IHU I hate you
IHY I hate you
II I'm impressed
IIT I'm impressed too
IIR if I recall
IIRC if I recall correctly
IJWTK I just want to know
IJWTS I just want to say
IK I know
IKWUM I know what you mean
ILBCNU I'll be seeing you
ILU I love you
ILY I love you
ILYFAE I love you forever and ever
IMAO in my arrogant opinion
IMFAO in my ******* arrogant opinion
IMBO in my bloody opinion
IMCO in my considered opinion
IME in my experience
IMHO in my humble opinion
IMNSHO in my, not so humble opinion
IMO in my opinion
IMOBO in my own biased opinion
IMPOV in my point of view
IMP I might be pregnant
INAL I'm not a lawyer
INPO in no particular order
IOIT I'm on Irish Time
IOW in other words
IRL in real life
IRMFI I reply merely for information
IRSTBO it really sucks the big one
IS I'm sorry
ISTM it seems to me
ISTR I seem to recall
ISWYM I see what you mean
ITFA in the final analysis
ITRO in the reality of
ITRW in the real world
ITSFWI if the shoe fits, wear it
IVL in virtual live
IWALY I will always love you
IWBNI it would be nice if
IYKWIM if you know what I mean
IYSWIM if you see what I mean
J
JAM just a minute
JAS just a second
JASE just another system error
JAWS just another windows shell
JIC just in case
JJWY just joking with you
JK just kidding
J/K just kidding
JMHO just my humble opinion
JMO just my opinion
JP just playing
J/P just playing
JTLYK just to let you know
JW just wondering
K
K OK
K kiss
KHYF know how you feel
KB kiss back
KISS keep it simple sister
KIS(S) keep it simple (stupid)
KISS keeping it sweetly simple
KIT keep in touch
KMA kiss my ass
KMB kiss my butt
KMSMA kiss my shiny metal ass
KOTC kiss on the cheek
KOTL kiss on the lips
KPC keeping parents clueless
KUTGW keep up the good work
KWIM know what I mean?
L
L laugh
L8R later
L8R G8R later gator
LAB life's a *****
LAM leave a message
LBR little boys room
LD long distance
LG lovely greetings
LGBNAF let's get butt nkd and f---
LGR little girls room
LHM Lord help me
LHU Lord help us
LL&P live long & prosper
LNK love and kisses
LMA leave me alone
LMABO laughing my *** back on
LMAO laughing my *** off
LMBO laughing my butt off
LMHO laughing my head off
LMIRL let's meet in real life
LMFAO laughing my fat *** off
LMK let me know
LOL laughing out loud
LOL lots of love
LOL lots of luck
LOLA laughing out loud again
LOML light of my life (or love of my life)
LOMLILY light of my life, I love you
LOOL laughing out outrageously loud
LSHIPMP laughing so hard I peed my pants
LSHMBB laughing so hard my belly is bouncing
LSHMBH laughing so hard my belly hurts
LTNS long time no see
LTR long term relationship
LTS laughing to self
LULAS love you like a sister
LUWAMH love you with all my heart
LY love ya
LYK let you know
LYL love ya lots
LYLAB love ya like a brother
LYLAS love ya like a sister
M
M male
MB maybe
MILF mother I'd like to ****
MYOB mind your own business
MWBRL More Will Be Revealed Later
M8 mate
N
N in
N2M not too much
N/C not cool
NALOPKT not a lot of people know that
NE1 anyone
NETUA nobody ever tells us anything
NFI no ******* idea
NIFOC Nude In Front Of Computer
NL not likely
NM never mind / nothing much
N/M never mind / nothing much
NMH not much here
NMJC nothing much, just chillin'
NOM no offense meant
NOTTOMH not of the top of my mind
NOYB none of your business
NOYFB none of your ******* business
NP no problem
NTA non-technical acronym
N/S no ****
NVM nevermind
O
OBTW oh, by the way
OIC oh, I see
OF on fire
OFIS on floor with stitches
OK abbreviation of oll korrect (all correct)
OL old lady (wife, girlfriend)
OLL on-line love
OM old man (husband, boyfriend)
OMG oh my god / gosh / goodness
OOC out of character
OT Off topic / other topic
OTOH on the other hand
OTP on the phone
OTTOMH off the top of my head
P
PAW parents are watching
PDS please don't shoot
PDOMA pulled directly out of my ***
PEBCAK problem exists between chair and keyboard
PLZ please
PM private message
PMJI pardon my jumping in (Another way for PMFJI)
PMFJI pardon me for jumping in
PMP peed my pants
POAHF put on a happy face
POOF I have left the chat
pornado large amount of pornographic content
POTB pats on the back
POS parents over shoulder
POTS parents over the shoulder - (My parents are watching, I can't really talk)
PPL people
PS post script
PSA public show of affection
P911 parent emergency
Q
Q4U question for you
QSL reply
QSO conversation
QT cutie
R
RAT remote(ly) activated Trojan
RCed reconnected
RE hi again (same as re's)
RIHAD rot in h--- and die
ROFL rolling on floor laughing
ROFLAPMP rolling on floor laughing and peed my pants
ROFLMAO rolling on floor laughing my *** off
ROFLOLAY rolling on floor laughing out loud at you
ROFLOLTSDMC rolling on floor laughing out loud tears streaming down my cheeks
ROFLOLWTIME rolling on floor laughing out loud with tears in my eyes
ROFLOLUTS rolling on floor laughing out loud unable to speak
ROTFL rolling on the floor laughing
RTF read the FAQ
RTF read the FAQ
RTM read the manual
RTSM read the stupid manual
RUMOF are you male or female
RUTTM are you talking to me
RUUP4IT are you up for it?
RVD really very dumb
S
S2R send to receive
SAMAGAL stop annoying me and get a live
SCNR sorry, could not resist
SETE smiling ear to ear
SH so hot
SH same here
SHICPMP so happy I could pee my pants
SHID slaps head in disgust
SHMILY see how much I love you
SNAFU situation normal, all ****** up
SO significant other
SOHF sense of humor failure
SOMY sick of me yet?
SPAM stupid persons' advertisement
SRY sorry
SSDD same **** different day
STBY sucks to be you
STFU shut the **** up
STW search the web
sugarpic Suggestive or erotic picture of self
SWAK sealed with a kiss
SWALK sweet, with all love, kisses
SWL screaming with laughter
SIM sh*t, it's Monday
SITWB sorry, in the wrong box
S/U shut up
SYS see you soon
SYSOP system operator
T
TA thanks again
TAW teachers are watching
TCO taken care of
TGIF thank god its Friday
THTH to hot to handle
THX thanks
TIA thanks in advance
TIIC the idiots in charge
TJM that's just me
TLA three-letter acronym
TMA take my advice
TMI to much information
TMS to much showing
TNSTAAFL there's no such thing as a free lunch
TNX thanks
TOH to other half
TOY thinking of you
TPTB the powers that be
TSDMC tears streaming down my cheeks
TT2T to tired to talk
TTFN ta ta for now
TTT thought that, too
TTUL talk to you later
TTYIAM talk to you in a minute
TTYL talk to you later
TTYLMF talk to you later my friend
TU thank you
TWMA till we meet again
TX thanx
TY thank you
TYVM thank you very much
U
U2 you too
UAPITA you're a pain in the ***
U IZ A you is a hoe
UMFRIEND 'intimate' partner
UR your
UW you're welcome
URAQT! you are a cutie!
V
VBG very big grin
VBS very big smile
W
W8 wait
W8AM wait a minute
WAY what about you
WAY who are you
WB welcome back
WBS write back soon
WDHLM why doesn't he love me
WDYWTTA What Do You Want To Talk About
WE whatever
W/E whatever
WFM works for me
WNDITWB we never did it this way before
WP wrong person
WRT with respect to
WTF what/who the ****?
WTG way to go
WTGP want to go private?
WTH what/who the heck?
WTMI way to much information
WU what's up?
WUD what's up dog?
WUF where are you from?
WUWT whats up with that
WYCM? will you call me?
WYMM will you marry me?
WYRN What’s Your Real Name?
WYSIWYG what you see is what you get
X
XTLA extended three letter acronym
Y
Y why?
Y2K you're too kind
YATB you are the best
YBS you'll be sorry
YG young gentleman
YHBBYBD you'd have better bet your bottom dollar
YKYWTKM you know you want to kiss me
YL young lady
YL you 'll live
YM you mean
YM young man
YMMD you've made my day
YMMV your mileage may vary
YVM you're very welcom
YW you're welcome
YWIA you're welcome in advance
YWTHM you want to hug me
YWTLM you want to love me
YWTKM you want to kiss me
YOYO you're on your own
YY4U two wise for you
Z
ZZZ sleeping, bored, tired

Related Articles:
Emoticons and Smileys - Their Functions and Meanings
English Idioms - English phrases and their meanings
Latin Abbreviations and their English meaning

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11 Comments:

At 10:28 PM, Blogger Canuckistani said...
 
At 4:26 AM, Blogger Digital Art Photography for Dummies said...
 
At 10:47 AM, Anonymous - K - said...
 
At 9:57 PM, Blogger jessada said...
 
At 9:28 PM, Blogger R. Edmondson said...
 
At 6:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...
 
At 12:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...
 
At 2:16 AM, Anonymous Web Design Company said...
 
At 4:13 PM, Anonymous Shamia said...
 
At 4:14 AM, Anonymous Gadgets UK said...
 
At 5:47 PM, Anonymous Cannon 10755GF said...
 

Finally, a translation of all those online acronyms! Thanks!

I've been looking for something like this for a long while. When I'm not writing Dummies books, I teach an online linguistics class and I've told my students about it. Thanks--this is something that the texts we use just haven't approached ye.

thanks for the list. Great job!

Nice list. However ... do you REALLY think there actually is a STANDARD list for all this acronyms? -- Jessada

Canuckistani:
You are welcome :) Thanks for the kind comment and for stopping by :)

Matthew:
I'm glad that I could be of some help :) I guess there be a book on internet slang for dummies in the near future :) Thanks for stopping by and for the recommendation.

K:
You are welcome:) Thanks for the compliment and for stopping by :)

Jessada:
Thank you. I would pretty much say that there is a standard list. The reason for saying so is that these internet slang has consistently been used very regularly on the internet and text messaging for quite a long while now. Those listed at my site are frequently used and are thus popular slang with their related meanings. There will always be new slang that will be created as time goes by. However, those that are listed can only have one, two are more meaning using the same abbreviation. Similar to a dictionary having more than one meaning for a given word.

Teenagers dont even use all of those. Some of those i've never heard of and i am a teenager. And there are others that you still dont have on there. I thought i would comment and let you know. lol. ttfn.

Who knows where to download XRumer 5.0 Palladium?
Help, please. All recommend this program to effectively advertise on the Internet, this is the best program!

Nice information, many thanks to the author. It is incomprehensible to me now, but in general, the usefulness and significance is overwhelming. Thanks again and good luck! Web Design Company

no they still don't have one: DWL, i came to find it here and i'm very disappointed, but seeing that i live in Jamaica maybe thats the case.

Thanks you. Very good post.Unless they can offer a really compelling reason for users to come back, it will be the next Bebo, MySpace

This Blog is going places, the people, the layout, amazing to see such dedication and focus.

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