Web slang spreads like wildfire and typically appears to come back out of nowhere. Some are short-lived, some are utilized in area of interest communities, however some go as far as to be included in dictionaries.

internet slang

Whether or not you spend time on-line as an informal consumer or a marketer enacting a social media technique, you wish to know what totally different slang and abbreviations imply.

On this put up, we’ll talk about how web slang originates and spreads, outline 81 slang phrases you may come throughout, and description what it takes for slang to be added to our dictionaries.

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Desk of Contents

Is the Web to Blame?

As we spend much less time listening to the radio or watching TV and extra time on-line, the latter has essentially the most affect on our day-to-day dialogue.

The quick tempo of the web additionally means we undertake phrases a lot quicker than ever earlier than. “Language itself modifications slowly, however the web has sped up the method of these modifications so that you discover them extra rapidly,” David Crystal, honorary professor of linguistics on the College of Bangor, told BBC Information. You may think about how for much longer it took new phrases to unfold via word-of-mouth than it does at present with the web.

How Slang Spreads on the Web

Linguistics and anthropologists have studied how slang spreads for many years, but it surely was solely attainable to measure with precision as soon as public social media networks emerged.

Platforms assist linguists precisely and simply search and report language exchanges. For instance, Jacob Eisenstein and his colleagues on the Georgia Institute of Know-how examined 30 million tweets from the U.S. to pinpoint the origin of well-liked slang phrases and their unfold. The picture under is the ensuing map that reveals how phrases migrated and their course of affect.

internet slang migration in the us

Slang now strikes round inside weeks and months as an alternative of years, says Julia Coleman, writer of The Lifetime of Slang. “It isn’t essentially that language is altering extra rapidly, however applied sciences have developed they usually permit the transmission of slang phrases to move from one group to a different rather more rapidly.”

Web Slang Across the World

The web impacts the event of language all the world over.

In Ukraine, Svitlana Pyrkalo says the force-quit means of urgent management+alt+delete is named Дуля (dulya). A dulya is a Ukranian gesture utilizing two fingers and a thumb, utilized in the identical conditions wherein we‘d give “the finger.” “And also you want three fingers to press the buttons,” says Pyrkalo. “So it’s like telling someone, a pc on this case, to get misplaced.”

Different nations have their very own variations of “LOL.” In France, “mdr” stands for “mort de rire,” which means dying of laughter. The Swedish write “asg” as an abbreviation of Asgarv, which means intense laughter. The quantity 5 in Thailand signifies the letter “h,” so 555 is “hahaha.”

It’s essential to notice that plenty of well-liked web slang comes from African-American Vernacular English (AAVE), a type of English spoken by Black Individuals. Usually, Black individuals have conversations on-line, different individuals use the phrases, they usually grow to be a part of on a regular basis web communicate.

With all of this in thoughts, let’s overview a number of the hottest web slang phrases, a lot of that are acronyms and others full phrases and phrases.

Web Slang Phrases

Normal Web Slang

1. Acct

Acct is brief for account.

2. BC

BC stands for as a result of.

3. Wager

Wager has a number of meanings, one being a easy “sure” or a response of settlement, however it may well additionally imply “It’s on” as a response to one thing you don’t consider is true.

For instance, somebody says, “I can do that higher than you,” and somebody responds, “Alright, wager.”

4. BRB

BRB stands for be proper again.

5. BTW

BTW stands for by the best way.

6. Down

Down means “sure,” or a response demonstrating that you just’re up for or excited about one thing.

For instance, “Who desires to go to the films?” “Down.”

7. Flex

Flex means displaying off. Often individuals say, “Bizarre flex however okay,” to react to somebody displaying off or bragging about one thing in poor style.


FOMO stands for concern of lacking out, and that i’ts used when somebody is anxious about not being invited someplace or isn’t a part of an expertise.

It’s additionally used as an lively verb, like “Everybody’s on the live performance, and I’m having FOMO.”

9. FYI

FYI stands in your info.

10. Goat

Goat means best of all time. Individuals additionally say goated to imply the identical factor. For instance, “Messi is the goat,” or “Messi is goated.”

11. GTG or G2G

GTG and G2G stand for obtained to go.

12. Highkey

Highkey describes one thing manifestly apparent and true that doesn’t must be hidden. It’s the other of lowkey.

For instance, “That was highkey the perfect meal I’ve ever had,” or “I highkey want tickets to the present.”

13. IKR

IKR stands for I do know, proper?

14. IMHO

IMHO stands for in my sincere opinion or in my humble opinion.

15. IRL

IRL stands for in actual life.

16. Iykyk

Iykyk stands for “If , ,” and it’s a descriptor for an inside joke or one thing area of interest that applies to a selected group of individuals.

17. JK

JK stands for simply kidding.

18. JOMO

JOMO stands for pleasure of lacking out, and it is used when somebody is unbothered by not being invited someplace/lacking an expertise or is comfortable as a result of they weren’t to start with. The other of FOMO.

19. Ok

Ok means okay, however can be used when somebody is pissed off and is placing an finish to a dialog.

20. L

L means loss or loser, and it’s often stated when somebody has failed at one thing or a state of affairs hasn’t gone their method, like “I took an L final night time.”

If individuals don’t agree with one thing they see on-line, they could remark “L” to convey their level.

21. LMK

LMK stands for let me know.

22. LOL

LOL stands for snigger out loud.

23. Lowkey

Lowkey has a number of meanings.

  • When somebody is barely or reasonably bothered by one thing, but it surely isn’t an enormous deal: “I’m lowkey unhappy I missed the present, however there’s all the time subsequent time.”
  • When one thing needs to be saved secret, discreet, and never shared exterior of the dialog: “Lowkey, I would give up.”
  • To explain a mellow or low-stakes state of affairs: “It was a lowkey celebration with my closest buddies.”

24. Mid

Mid means common or under common. It’s often a dig at somebody or one thing, like, “That film was mid.”

25. NBD

NBD stands for no large deal.

26. OOTD

OOTD stands for outfit of the day.

27. Photobomb

Photobomb means coming into somebody’s image or video uninvited, often on goal.

28. Prolly

Prolly is slang for most likely.

29. Salty

Salty means upset or bothered.

30. TFW

TFW stands for that feeling when.

31. TBH

TBH stands for to be sincere.

32. TL;DR

Individuals use it earlier than giving a abstract when telling a narrative or sharing info. Individuals additionally remark TL;DR to say they received’t learn one thing as a result of it’s too lengthy.

33. TGIF

TGIF stands for thank god it’s Friday.

34. TMI

TMI stands for an excessive amount of info.

35. Troll

A troll is somebody who purposely sparks controversy on the web. Somebody may say, “Ignore that remark; he’s only a troll.”

36. W

W stands for win, and it’s used when somebody has received one thing, or one thing good has occurred, like “How was your recreation final night time?” “It was nice we obtained the W!”

The other of L.

Social Media Web Slang

1. AMA

AMA stands for asking me something. It originated on Reddit, the place somebody well-known has an AMA session the place discussion board audiences can submit questions for them to reply.

2. Anon

Anon is brief for nameless.


ASMR stands for autonomous sensory meridian response, and it’s any video or audio content material that gives a calming and satisfying feeling to viewers.

4. Bot

A bot is an account that shares spammy and undesirable content material or an individual who shares undesirable content material or is unhealthy at one thing.

5. Bump

Somebody says “Bump” to push a remark or put up again to the forefront of a thread or remark part.

6. Caught in 4K

Caught in 4K means to catch somebody red-handed.

7. DM

DM stands for direct message.

8. Doomscrolling

Doomscrolling describes spending limitless time scrolling via your social media feeds, often via grim information tales.

It might additionally imply getting caught scrolling via content material for a major period of time.

9. FB

FB stands for Fb.

10. Deal with

A deal with is a username on any social media.

11. Hashtag

Hashtag (#) is a method that individuals discover content material on social media. Typically individuals say hashtag out loud in an ironic method, like “Hashtag yummy” whereas consuming.

12. Icon

An icon is an image on social media, often a profile image.

13. IG

IG stands for Instagram.

15. Lurker

A lurker is lively on social media or particular channels however by no means feedback or participates within the dialog.

16. N00b

N00b is slang for amateur, and it’s a descriptor for somebody who’s a newbie or new to one thing. Individuals name themselves a n00b, and saying it to another person means they’re ignorant or unhealthy at one thing.

It’s additionally spelled noob or newb.

17. OP

OP stands for authentic poster, and it’s the one who began a dialog on social media or was the primary to share one thing.

18. QRT

QRT stands for quote retweet, and it’s when somebody reshares a Tweet to their profile and provides their commentary above it.

19. Ratio/Ratioed

Ratio and ratioed are used as a dig when somebody doesn’t agree with what somebody has stated. They could remark “Ratio” with full confidence that they’ll get extra likes than the unique put up as a result of extra individuals agree with them.

20. RT

RT stands for retweet, and it’s once you reshare another person’s Tweet to your timeline.

21. @me

@me is usually used when somebody sees one thing somebody has stated, assumes it’s about them, and tells the unique poster to tag them immediately.

22. Shook

Shook means to be extraordinarily shocked by one thing or an expertise you’ve had.

23. Spam

Spam is content material shared on social media that’s annoying and unwelcome.

24. Stan/stanning

Stan means fiercely supporting somebody or one thing

25. TBT

TBT stands for throwback Thursday.

26. Tea

Tea is gossip. When individuals share it, it’s referred to as “Spilling the tea,” or individuals might say, “What’s the tea?”

27. TW

TW stands for Twitter.

28. Vibe

Vibe has a number of meanings. It might describe chilling (stress-free), or how a state of affairs may really feel.

Somebody may say, “What’s the vibe?” or “This provides me an excellent vibe,” or “I’m vibing proper now.”

29. Vibe verify

Vibe verify is a query individuals ask to see how somebody is feeling or how a present state of affairs goes.

Enterprise Web Slang


ASAP stands for as quickly as attainable.

2. YT

YT stands for YouTube.

3. B2B

B2B stands for enterprise to enterprise.

4. B2C

B2C stands for enterprise to client.

5. CTA

CTA stands for name to motion.

6. DNB

DNB stands for don’t e-book, meant to specify a timeframe once you aren’t accessible for conferences.

7. EOD

EOD stands for finish of day.

8. EOW

EOW stands for finish of week.

9. FAQ

FAQ stands for continuously requested questions.

10. MOM

MOM stands for month over month.

11. OOO

OOO stands for out of workplace.

12. TBA

TBA stands for to be introduced.

13. WFH

WFH stands for do business from home.

14. WOM

WOM stands for phrase of mouth.

15. YOY

YOY stands for 12 months over 12 months.

16. Zoombomb/Zoombombing

Zoomboming is a disruption to a Zoom assembly by somebody who hasn’t been invited to the assembly.

How New Phrases Make It Into the Dictionary

As soon as new phrases have grown and grow to be a part of the final lexicon, how do acronyms like “LOL” make it to the dictionary? Longevity.

To make it into the dictionary, the final inhabitants should use it and hold utilizing it. Fiona McPherson, Senior Editor, Oxford English Dictionary, says 5 years is an effective size to grow to be eligible for a spot within the large e-book.

Dictionary editors additionally look to us when voting on whether or not a phrase ought to have a spot of their dictionary. “Dictionaries are improbable sources, however they’re human and they aren’t timeless,” Language Historian Anne Curzan reminds us. “If you happen to ask dictionary editors, what they‘ll let you know is that they’re simply attempting to maintain up with us as we modify the language. They‘re watching what we are saying and what we write and attempting to determine what’s going to stay and what’s not going to stay.”

So, irrespective of whether or not you assume web slang vitalizes or destroys language, there is no denying how revealing it’s of the tradition that invents and makes use of it — and the convenience with which we adapt our language to new applied sciences and ideas.


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