39 Common Shorthand Acronyms You’ll Find Online

advice | copywriting
notebook and pens on wooden floor

Words are my thing, okay? Real, full, well-chosen, descriptive, correctly spelt words. I’ve never used “text speak” and spend half my life telling my parents ‘gr8’ is not a legitimate word. It’s the word nerd in me. I can’t help it.

But we now live in a world where speed is of the essence. Especially when we’re doing things online – like commenting and chatting on messenger services. Even I’m quite partial to the occasional ‘LOL’ or well-placed emoji. But I actually had no idea just how many acronyms we use online, how many bits of shorthand there are out there for all the words and ideas we want to convey in our online worlds. We are in just one big hurry to get things said, aren’t we?

But I decided to share what I consider to be the 39 most common shorthand acronyms you’ll find online. Consider this me being helpful. Consider this me relenting a little on my word nerdery. And let’s never speak of this again. Okay?!

notebook and pens on wooden floor

IMO/IMHO – In my opinion/In my humble opinion

ICYMI – In case you missed it

WYSIWYG – What you see is what you get

AFAIK – As far as I know

BTW – By the way

FAQ – Frequently asked questions

FWIW – For what it’s worth

FTW – For the win (yes, even this poorly syntaxed phrase has an acronym…)

IDK – I don’t know

LOL – Laugh out loud

ROFL – Rolling on the floor laughing

WTF/WTAF/WTH – What the fuck/What the actual fuck/What the hell (for the non-swearers in the room)

MYOB – Mind your own business

F2F – Face to face

NSFW – Not safe for work

NVM/NM – Nevermind

TMI – Too much information

ASAP – As soon as possible

TTYL – Talk to you later

YOLO – You only live once

TFW – That feeling when

JK – Joke/joking

TBH – To be honest

SMH – Shaking my head

SRSLY – Seriously (ok, less acronym and more sheer laziness…)

IIRC – If I remember/recall correctly

TL;DR – Too long; didn’t read

HTH – Hope this helps

IYKWIM – If you know what I mean

OP – Original post/poster

TY – Thank you

FOMO – Fear of missing out

IKR – I know right

LMAO – Laughing my arse off

RLY – Really (I mean, really?!)

OOTD – Outfit of the day

OMG – Oh my god

OH – Other half/On hand/On hold (ok, now this is getting complicated…)

BRB – Be right back

Now you can be totally safe in the knowledge that you know what all the kids are talking about. At least, this is the stuff they won’t mind you knowing about. There’s a whole lot more out there to wrap your head around!