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List of IM, SMS, & Email Abbreviations, Acronyms, and Slang

Updated on August 5, 2017
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Lena Kovadlo is a writer for various content-sharing websites. She's the author of 12 books and helps other authors publish theirs.

SMS, IM, & Email Abbreviations, Acronyms, and Slang

When we send someone an SMS (text message), an IM (instant message), a tweet, or even an email, often we are limited by the number of characters we can use. Also, we might not have the time to sit there and write everything out. That is when we start using acronyms, abbreviations, slang, symbols, or other shorthand to convey what we want to say to another person. It is faster, less time consuming, and there is no worry about running out of space or reaching a character limit.

Since the use of acronyms, abbreviations, slang, symbols, and other shorthand have become very popular when communicating with people, online or via cell phone, it can be thought of as a new language - the language of online conversation. It is a good idea to learn this new language so that we can better understand what the heck someone is trying to tell us, and so we can respond back to them in a way they will understand us too. Plus, why waste valuable time writing everything out when we can abbreviate or use shorthand and get on with our lives.

Below you will find a list of popular or common abbreviations, acronyms, slang, symbols, and other shorthand along with their meanings... Some of these you may already know and some of these may be new to you. Either way get ready to experience a whole new language - the language of online conversation.


  • LMAO = Laughing My Ass Off
  • ROFL = Rolling On The Floor Laughing
  • SMH = Shaking My Head
  • BRB = Be Right Back
  • LOL = Laughing Out Loud
  • BB = Blackberry
  • BBM = BlackBerry Me
  • BFF = Best Friend Forever
  • TTYL = Talk To You Later
  • TTYS = Talk To You Soon
  • XOXO = Hugs and Kisses
  • I ♥ U = I Love You
  • AWOL = Away While On Line
  • MIA = Missing In Action
  • RSVP = Response Requested
  • ASAP = As Soon As Possible
  • AKA = Also Known As
  • BTDT = Been There, Done That
  • BTW = By The Way
  • IMHO = In My Humble Opinion
  • IM = Instant Message
  • SMS = Text Message
  • NP = No Problem


  • Bro = Brother
  • Sis = Sister
  • Cuz = Cousin
  • Gramps = Grandpa
  • Grams = Grandma
  • Gurlz = Girls
  • Homie = Friend, person you know
  • Teach = Teacher
  • Prof = Professor
  • Ppl = People
  • Sec = Second
  • Min = Minute
  • Hrs = Hours
  • Mos = Months
  • Yrs = Year
  • Lib = Library
  • Luv = Love
  • Txt = Text
  • 2nite = Tonight
  • 2moro = Tomorrow
  • 4eva = Forever
  • 4get = Forget
  • 4EAE = For Ever And Ever
  • AEAE = And Ever And Ever
  • BFF = Best Friend Forever
  • BFFAE = Best Friend Forever And Ever
  • BF = Boyfriend
  • GF = Girlfriend
  • Cig = Cigarette
  • Frk = Freak
  • TV = Television
  • Vid = Video
  • Aud = Audio
  • Rad = Radio
  • Str8 = Straight
  • Da = The
  • Y = why
  • R = Are
  • B = Be
  • C = See
  • U = You
  • N = And
  • Thnx = Thanks
  • Num / No. = Number
  • 2 = To, Too
  • 4 = For
  • 8 = Ate
  • Ur = You Are, Your
  • Msc = Music
  • BZ = Busy
  • G2G = Got To Go
  • Def = Definitely
  • Gr8 = Great
  • I H8 U = I Hate You
  • I <3 U = I Love You
  • L8R = Later
  • Y'all = You
  • All Y'all = All of you


  • $ = money
  • = Heart, Love
  • :) or :-) = Smile
  • :( or (-: = Frown
  • ;) or ;-)= Wink
  • :D = Very wide grin
  • :P = Tongue (sticking out)
  • :'( = Crying
  • <3 = Heart
  • :-O = Gasp, surprised
  • :x = My lips are sealed
  • ^5 = High five
  • :* = Kisses
  • P* = French kisses
  • (o_o) = Shocked
  • }:[ = Angry
  • :| = Serious

Number Codes

Sometimes when people want to tell something to another person, without having others understand what they are saying, they write their messages using numbers. For example: if someone writes the following message 4 5683 8 what they are really saying is I Love U.

To find out what the numbers stand for you have to look at the keypad on either your house phone or your cell phone. Each number, except the number 1 and the number 0 have letters above them. Numbers 2-8 have three letters above them, while number 9 has four. Since each number has at least three letters above it, figuring out which letters the numbers correspond to and which words they form can be a bit tricky.

For example, if one of the number combinations in the message is 663 the word can either be one or nod. To figure out which word the numbers stand for you would have to decipher the rest of the numbers in the message.

Writing in numerical codes can be a good way to share something with someone without having others understand what you are trying to say. Many might not know how to decipher the numbers or that they even stand for something; while others might take a long time to figure it out or may not even bother figuring it out at all.

Deciphering numerical codes can be fun and entertaining for both the writer and the recipient but probably for the recipient that much more...

Numerical Codes - A Fun Challenge...

Can you figure out what these numerical codes stand for? Good luck!

  • 44
  • 43556
  • 84265 968
  • 469 273 968
  • 4663 6676464
  • 4283 2 6423 329

© 2011 Lena Kovadlo


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