Are you fluent in text speak? From LOL to WTF, how to avoid embarrassing phone fails

Abbreviations such as LOL, OMG and BTW are now part of our everyday lingo with one in ten people using them everyday - but three quarters people don't know what they mean.

Monday, 18th September 2017, 11:39 am
Updated Monday, 18th September 2017, 11:45 am
Do you know your LOLs from your WTFs?

Online smartphone retailer,, conducted the poll to find out just how text-savvy we are, and whether we know our ‘FYI’s from our ‘OMG’s.

According to results, one in ten (14%) smartphone owners use text speak in more than half the text messages they send, with the most common being LOL (41%), OMG (26%) and BTW (17%).

The five most commonly used text abbreviations are:

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1. LOL - Laugh out loud (41% use this)

2. OMG - Oh my god (26% use this)

3. BTW - By the way (17% use this)

4. FYI - For your information (16% use this)

5. WTF - What the ****? (13% use this)

The five text abbreviations that proved the most confusing are:

1. FOAK – First of a kind (88% don’t know this)

2. HAK – Hug and kiss (88% don’t know this)

3. DGMW – Don’t get me wrong (88% don’t know this)

4. KMN – Kill me now (87% don’t know this)

5. C-P – Copy and paste (87% don’t know this)

The most misused abbreviation is LOL with many believing it stands for ‘lots of love’, instead of ‘laugh out loud’.

Other ‘text talk’ fails include:

● WTF - Meaning: What the ****? / Misused as: What this for

● FYI - Meaning: For your information / Misused as: For your eyes only

● SMH - Meaning: Shaking my head / Misused as: So much hate

● QT - Meaning: Cutie / Misused as: Quiet time

To help smartphone users avoid any future awkward text talk fails, here’s the lowdown on what twenty of the most used abbreviations stand for.

1. LOL - Laugh out Loud

2. OMG - Oh my God

3. BTW - By the way

4. FYI - For your information

5. WTF - What the F***?

6. BRB - Be right back

7. DIY - Do it yourself

8. OTT - Over the top

9. FAQ - Frequently asked question

10. BFF - Best Friend Forever

11. IMHO - In my honest opinion

12. CTN - Can’t talk now

13. ROFL - Roll on the floor laughing

14. B3 - Blah blah blah

15. ILY - I love you

16. CWOT- Complete waste of time

17. MYOB - Mind your own business

18. PAL - Parents are listening

19. EM - Email

20. BM&Y - Between me and you

Andrew Cartledge, Mobile Expert at, said: “Text speak is a great way of communicating when we’re in a hurry. But with new abbreviations being adapted quite frequently, it can sometimes keep hard to keep up.”

“To avoid any awkward text fails make you sure totally clear on the meaning of any abbreviations you are using - hopefully our language of text talk blog will help!.”