10 common internet acronyms and abbreviations

acronyms and abbreviationsToday, the internet shapes not only how we communicate but also the words and phrases we use. If you’ve ever been lost while reading a tweet or watching a TikTok video because of different popular acronyms and abbreviations, you’re not alone! These terms are especially common on social media. Let’s look at 10 common internet acronyms and abbreviations you can use online. 


TFW – That feeling when … 

  • This abbreviation is often used to caption images that share a relatable emotion or experience. 
  • For example, TFW you sip your morning coffee might be paired with an image of someone enjoying their drink sitting at their office desk. 

POV – Point of view

  • Although this abbreviation isn’t new, it’s gained popularity on platforms like Instagram and TikTok. People use POV to allow viewers to step into someone else’s shoes and experience the life of the creator. POV text will usually be over an image or video clip.
  • For example, POV: You quit your 9–5 and start an Etsy shop; POV: you have the world’s cutest dog

FTW – For the win

  • FTW is used to show strong support for something or excitement about an achievement.
  • For example, Homemade pizza FTW!

TIL – Today I learned

  • This acronym is linked with the phrase I was today years old when…. It signifies new and often surprising knowledge. 
  • For example, TIL that honey never goes off, or TIL alligators don’t float – they walk under water! 

GOAT – Greatest of all time

  • This acronym is often used to talk about sports or entertainment. It means greatest of all time and is someone’s opinion on who they think is the best in their industry. 
  • For example, Michael Jordan is the GOAT of basketball; Messi is the GOAT. 

YOLO – You only live once

  • YOLO is used to explain that you’re living in the moment. It’s often used to justify trying something new or taking a risk.
  • For example, I ate the whole bar of chocolate – YOLO! 

NVM – Never mind

  • If you’ve changed your mind or decided that a previous message isn’t relevant anymore, you can say NVM. 
  • For example, I sent that message ages ago – NVM! 

IRL – In real life

  • IRL differentiates between the digital world and the offline one. 
  • For example, let’s meet up IRL means that someone who you know online (e.g. a video gamer you play with) wants to meet face–to–face. 

LMK – Let me know

  • LMK is a useful abbreviation to use when you’re waiting for information or a decision. 
  • For example, LMK if you’re coming to the party; LMK if you fancy meeting for a coffee. 

BTS – Behind the scenes

  • You may see this used by celebrities or influencers to show you what they’re doing behind the scenes of photo shoots, film sets, or their social media content creation. 
  • For example, BTS of my upcoming tour; Drake gives us a BTS look at the making of his new album. 


The world of online common acronyms and abbreviations is ever–changing, but by keeping up with this useful language, you can now tell your friends ‘TIL 10 new useful acronyms and abbreviations!’ 

LMK what other popular acronyms you know by writing in the comments below. You can also check out this post about Gen Z for more useful language. 



Write the correct words for the abbreviations in 1–10. Then, match the meanings. 

  1. LMK: _____ – 
  2. TIL: _____ – 
  3. YOLO: _____ – 
  4. BTS: _____ – 
  5. GOAT: _____ – 
  6. NVM: _____ – 
  7. TFW: _____ – 
  8. IRL: _____ – 
  9. FTW: _____ – 
  10. POV: _____ – 


    1. Someone’s opinion. 
    2. When you learn something new that you didn’t know until now. 
    3. When you want someone to tell you something, or an answer to something. 
    4. It doesn’t matter. 
    5. Only thinking about living in the moment. 
    6. Behind what the public sees. 
    7. Sharing a relatable experience. 
    8. Face-to-face, not online. 
    9. When you think or want something to succeed. 
    10. The best in history. 



  1. Let me know – C
  2. Today I learned – B 
  3. You only live once – E
  4. Behind the scenes – F
  5. Greatest of all time – J
  6. Never mind – D
  7. That feeling when – G
  8. In real life – H
  9. For the win – I
  10. Point of view – A


Author: Oxford University Press ELT

Every year we help millions of people around the world to learn English. As a department of the University of Oxford, we further the University’s objective of excellence in education by publishing proven and tested language learning books, eBooks, learning materials, and educational technologies.

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