5 Dec /13


Social media – One click and the selfie is complete.

Hastily napping and sharing pictures with the social media world undoubtedly has its drawbacks.  Who hasn’t found him or herself wishing to be able to undo a rash act of digital self-portraying? The regret often comes within minutes when the first unsolicited comments from “friends” and even worse, anonymous commentators start to arrive and often don’t exactly match the expectations of the artist/model.  But it is precisely because of the common practice and potentially far-reaching consequences of the selfie that the word has been crowned England’s word of the year for 2013 and subsequently been added to the Oxford English Dictionary.

The word selfie has been around since 2002 but only began to enjoy increasing popularity in the social media world last year when smart phones truly began to take over the mobile market in Europe and the U.S. Selfie refers to a self-portrait taken with a smartphone. After all, selfie is shorter and cooler than the alternative self-portrait. Ever since smart phones are equipped with powerful cameras the sight of teenagers on subways holding their smartphones out in front of them smiling, or frowning, at an imaginary photographer have become ever-present.

Like few other inventions, mobile technology has produced its own, distinctive language. While Teenagers have always “invented” their own language to dissociate themselves from adults, the language of mobile and social media is marked by abbreviations and acronyms. Keeping up with any language developments is one of the core responsibilities of a professional language service provider and an advantage of the native speaker concept employed by EVS Translations.

As an addition to the selfie, here is a brief guide to the language of social media:

A common preconception of the language of social and mobile media is that it focuses on the coded exchange of mature content. However, that is just a small part of the mobile dictionary. Most common terms are just ways of shortening common sayings. Here are some of the most common terms in use:

CD9                       code 9, short for parent nearby
LMIRL                  let’s meet in real life
P911                       parents watching
PAW or PRW       parents are watching
PIR                         parents in room
POS                        parents over shoulder
BF/GF                   Boyfriend and Girlfriend
LOL                       laugh(ing) out loud
BRB                       be right back
IDK                        I don’t know
NM                       not much or never mind
GTG                      got to go
IMO                     in my opinion
WTF                    what the f*ck
IIRC                     if I recall correctly
IANAL                 I am not a lawyer
ROFL                   rolling on the floor laughing
OMG                   oh my God
AFK                     away from keyboard
RTFM                  read the freaking manual
GG                        good game
TTYL                    talk to you later
BFF                      best friend forever
LMAO                 laughing my a** off
BTW                   by the way

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