In England (and in any other country where English is the primary language), it is common for adults and children alike to use abbreviations and shortened versions of words or phrases when sending text messages. The reason is simple – it’s quicker! If someone sends lots of text messages a day they want to do it as efficiently as possible, so shortened versions of long words are employed to save time.
It is generally the most commonly used, long words or phrases that see these abbreviations; however even fairly short words that one would not expect to see contracted are shortened too (such as to -> 2).
Shown below are some of the most commonly used abbreviations/reduced words in use today.
1.Use of the number 8/4/2 -> Replaces part of a word sounding like ‘eight’, ‘four ’or ‘two’.
E.g. ‘Could you ask my mate to do that for me please?’
becomes -> ‘Cud u ask my m8 2 do tht 4 me plz?’
2.Brb - -> Be right back - -> ‘Oh hang on a sec my m8 is here, brb’.
3.Afk - -> Away from keyboard - -> ‘Sorry need to go afk 4 a while’.
4.Tbh - -> To be honest - -> ‘Tbh with you I really cba today’.
5.Cba - -> Can’t be arsed - -> (see above).
6.Idk/c - -> I don’t know/care - -> ‘Sorry idk’/ ‘Sorry but idc’.
7.K(k) - -> Ok - -> ‘K np’
8.Jk! - -> Just kidding! - -> ‘LOL jk’.
9.G2g - -> Got to go - -> ‘Sorry man iv rly g2g’.
10.Nvm - -> Never mind - -> ‘Ah nw nvm’.
*It is important to remember when using these slang words whilst texting, that certain words or expressions may not be suitable for certain age groups. It really depends on context, who you are speaking to and how well you know them.
If you ever travel to England though and happen to exchange text messages with a native speaker, by looking at the messages they send to you it should soon become apparent what style of texting to use back. In general, as a person gets older, they use less texting slang and tend to spell words correctly. Mainly because they do not actually know the shortened forms! Since their generation has not grown up with mobile phones like the current one, so using them is still quite a foreign concept.