As a seventeen-year-old, I try to stay on top of the ever-changing world of teenage slang. However, it often feels like I need a translator to decipher a simple text from a friend.
Contrary to popular belief, slang is not only utilized to finish a tweet in less than 140 characters; it can be a stylistic choice, like your own distinct handwriting in a digital age. Understanding today’s slang can definitely enhance your Instagram captions, however, teens should know the difference between when it is acceptable to use such words and when it is not.
According to a survey of 700 students ages 12 to 17 by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, 85 percent of the respondents reported using a form of electronic communication. This is most likely not a surprise, due to the constant interaction between teens and technology that can be seen on a daily basis.
However, some teen are blurring the line between Snapchat and school essays—even college applications. Chad Dion Lassiter, professor of race relations at the University of Pennsylvania, notes, “Admissions officers have shared with me that a lot of the essays they’re encountering now are deeply rooted in this technological culture of cut-off sentences where you’re writing like you speak… After the first few sentences, college admissions professionals toss them to the side.” While these mistakes seem minor, they could in fact affect your chances of getting in a university.
While teens should understand the difference between hallway talk and scholarly papers, slang can be used as a form of self-expression. Whether through text or in person, there is a big difference in saying “Wow! HAHAH” and “You’re so EXTRA! Lol im ded.”
While this may help you emphasize a feeling or thought, there is still a time and place for this kind of exchange. Avoid this kind of lingo when you’re around teacher, parents, or employers. It may come off as rude or even stupidity. As Lassiter argues in his article he considers it “a dumbing down of culture.”
Over the years, I’ve learned from both my teachers and peers that there is a time and place for slang. Remember to be authentic and know your own voice, although you should also know limits that come using teenage slang.
As 2017 comes to an end, new terminology is emerging from the depths of social media and into the banter of teens; however, simultaneously other terms are slowly dying out.This is an attempt to help you stay up to date on the latest teenage slang. Here are some words you should probs know.
IYKYK: if you know you know
Fam: very close friends/friend group
GOAT: acronym for greatest of all time
Shook: Shocked or surprised
Issa: Short for “It’s A.”
SMH: Short for “shake my head.”
Lol: a classic and short for “laugh out loud”
Gucci: Good, cool, awesome
Salty: Annoyed, upset
Bible: Originated from Kim Kardashian and refers to “I swear on the bible”
Clap Back: A comeback with sass and shade.
Extra: Over the top dramatic behavior
Ded: Usually means dead from excitement, happiness,