Text Message Abbreviations and Chat Acronyms
So, all your English language classes are paying off1 and you’re finally getting the hang of2 speaking English. Then you start sending text messages and having online chat conversations with your friends in English and you discover a whole new language – abbreviations and acronyms!
1 If something you have done pays off, it is successful
2 to learn how to do something, especially if it is not obvious or simple
What is an abbreviation and an acronym?
An abbreviation is a short form of a word or phrase (e.g. TV is an abbreviation of television). An acronym is when you take the first letter of each word (or most words) in a phrase and put them together to make an abbreviation (e.g. TGIF is an acronym for Thank God It’s Friday).
Why do people use abbreviations and acronyms?
Abbreviations and acronyms are used a lot in chat conversations and text messages as a way to speed up conversations, get points across quickly and type less when you’re in a rush. Now, with Twitter’s limited characters in every Tweet, abbreviations are becoming more popular than ever!
Why should you learn text message abbreviations?
I am a native English speaker and it is often difficult for me to understand some of the abbreviations my friends include in their messages (don’t tell anyone but I sometimes have to look up the meanings online!), so I can imagine that if you are an English language student, it must be impossible!
Sometimes it can be very embarrassing if you misunderstand an abbreviation or use one in the wrong way. Check out this mum’s embarrassing moment when she used LOL in the wrong way!!
Below are 40 of the most common abbreviations used – try to learn some of them so you can impress your friends (or at least understand the messages you receive!)
Top 40 text and chat abbreviations
|LOL||Laughing Out Loud|
|BRB||Be Right Back|
|BBL||Be Back Later|
|ASAP||As Soon As Possible|
|B4N||Bye For Now|
|BTW||By The Way|
|C U L8R||See You Later|
|ETA||Estimated Time of Arrival|
|F2F||Face To Face|
|BFF||Best Friend Forever|
|AML||All My Love|
|GTG / G2G||Got To Go|
|IDK||I Don’t Know|
|IDC||I Don’t Care|
|ILY / ILU||I Love You|
|LMK||Let Me Know|
|TTYL||Talk To You Later|
|TMI||Too Much Information|
|CYE||Check Your Email|
|FYI||For Your Information|
|IMHO||In My Honest Opinion|
|ROFL||Rolling On the Floor Laughing|
|BION||Believe It Or Not|
|BRT||Be Right There|
|PCM||Please Call Me|
|IYKWIM||If You Know What I Mean|
|WYSIWYG||What You See Is What You Get|
|XOXO||Hugs and Kisses|
As you can see, some meanings are quite obvious but others are impossible to work out unless you’ve learnt them!
Have fun with English
Can you work out the meaning of this text message conversation between 2 friends?
Sam: Jen RU coming to the party tmrw?
Jen: Yeah. Y?
Sam: GR8. B/C I want U2B my GF
Jen: I thought you liked my BFF
Sam: No I like U
Jen: I have a BF
Sam: IDC. IMHO he’s an idiot
Jen: BION I like him
Sam: I want you. IYKWIM
Jen: TMI. Lets talk F2F tmrw
Sam: I’ve never felt like this B4. ILU
Jen: PCM now
Sam: Haha JK. U believed me? ROFL. I don’t like you!
Jen: UR def not funny!
Sam: LOL. K CU tmrw. ETA?
Jen: IDK. 9 I guess
Jen: GTG TTYL
Sam: BFN XOXO
Last week’s answers