Internet Slang Special – English abbreviations (CBA, TBH, BTW, TMI)

Hello and Welcome back to a new episode of the slang podcast with me Louisa May Adams.

This show will give you the chance to hear, understand the origins and meanings of new slang and to use them immediately!

Today we will be exploring essential internet abbreviations.

The more time you spend learning English, the more time you’ll spend reading and writing English on the internet. I know as a language learner this can be exciting but also very frustrating!

You may be familiar with L-O-L (laugh out loud) or O-M-G (oh my god). But there are many more us brits use that are slightly less obvious.

So to start, we will discuss an abbreviation used to decline or refuse offers. I use many of these frequently, the most being C-B-A meaning I can’t be asked, which means I do not want to because I do not have the energy or desire.

It can be used as so if my friend asks me to go out for dinner late on a cold January evening I will often reply CBA, in short meaning no.

Ok my second most used internet abbreviation is T-B-H translating to to be honest. A way of signifying you are about to tell the truth. It does not really add anything to a conversation but many people use it when they feel like what they’re about to say is extra honest, something they really believe, or something they’ve thought about thoroughly before saying.

We could use it like this “TBH I don’t want to go to the party as I do not like the host.” meaning if I am honest I don’t like the host of the party so I will not be attending.

Ok number three, B-T-W… no I am not talking about a fake version of a BMW! BTW translates to By the Way. A way of introducing a new topic into conversation.

For example I could text my flatmate “I will be back at four, BTW you need to go shopping as there is no food at home”.

Ok so on to our last abbreviation. T-M-I translating to “Too much information”. A way of saying that something contains too many intimate details. For example if my brother is sick and starts describing how many times he has vomited today I may respond “TMI Joe, I know you are sick and don’t need to know everything”.

So they are our phrases of the day! Maybe now you can decode what your British friends are talking about!

Don’t want to leave your bed?! Tell them: TBH I CBA to go to that party! Let them know!

You can find us on our website and from there you can see our transcript and subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and many more apps. Or head over to our facebook page for updates and more slang!