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Smiley's, Acronyms, and Abbreviations

By Ruben Flores
Posted Tuesday, September 7, 2004

I'm sure you are familiar with smiley's. You definitely know what acronyms and abbreviations are. But, do you know the many different variations of smileys, acronyms, abbreviations, and their meanings? This issue were gonna go over that whole other form of language that Web culture has become accustomed to.


Since you usually cannot see the person with whom you are communicating with, you usually cannot be sure if they are joking or serious when you read a particular comment. (Well you can, but that would require additional equipment and software on both ends.) This is where smiley's come in. Smiley's (also called "emoticons" - a cross between emotions and icons) can be used to add emotion to an otherwise plan text message. Here are some of the many variations of smiley. (To view, tilt your head sideways to the left)

:-) or :) The classic Smiley
;-) Winking
:-( or :( Sad
:-o Shock or Surprise
:-O Yelling or Shouting
:-)~ Drooling
:-? Speechless
:-\ Mad
:'( Crying
:-> Devilish Smile
:-/ or <g> Grinning :-D Laughing
:-[ Bummer
:-x Keep Your Mouth Shut
:-X Keep Your Big Mouth Shut
Invisible Smiley

Be creative and you can come up with your own smiley's using your keyboard. Here are a few of my personal creations, although I'm sure they have probably existed elsewhere before.

:^) Happy Profile
;^) Happy Profile Wink
8-{ Goggles & Mustache
:-{~ Lowrider
<:o) Clown
@:-) Genie
@)-',-->--',-->-- Cyber Roses



Acronyms and abbreviation are used to shorten a phrase to two or more letters to save time and space when writing a message.

For example, typing: "btw, imho"

is a lot shorter than typing: "by the way, in my humble opinion"

There are many, many different combinations of acronyms or abbreviations. You may have come across some that you didn't quite understand what they meant. Well, here is a list of the most commonly used acronyms & abbreviations on the Net.
2L8 - Too Late
AAMOF - As A Matter Of Fact
AFAIK - As Far As I Know
B4N - Bye For Now
BCOT - Be Careful Out There
BTW - By The Way
CMIIW - Correct Me If I'm Wrong
CUL - See You Later
FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
FOAF - Friend Of A Friend
FWIW - For What It's Worth
FYI - For Your Information
HTH - Hope This Helps
IAC - In Any Case
IDM2M - It Doesn't Matter To Me
IKWUM - I Know What You Mean
IMHO - In My Humble Opinion
IMO - In My Opinion
IRL - In Real Life
IOW - In Other Words
J4L - Just For Laughs
J4F - Just For Fun
KWIM - Know What I Mean
L8R - Later
LMAO - Laughing My A** Off
LOL - Laughing Out Loud
MOTOS - Member Of The Opposite Sex
MOTSS - Member Of The Same Sex.
NN2R - No Need To Reply
OTOH - On The Other Hand
OIC - Oh I See
ROTFL - Rolling On The Floor Laughing
RTFM - Read The F#*&!@ Manual.
SIG - Special Interest Groups OR Signature
T2UL - Talk To You Later
TIA - Thanks In Advance
TNX - Thanks
TAFN - That's All For Now
TTFN - Ta Ta For Now
WDYT - What Do You Think
WRT - With Respect To

Keep in mind that it is considered bad netiquette to type ALL IN CAPS, but it is o.k. to use ALL CAPS when using acronyms & abbreviations. All caps represent SHOUTING and can be rude when used in a regular message.

Copyright 1999 - Ruben Flores - All Rights Reserved

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