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The Evolution of Social Media Slang: From LOL to Lit

In the ever-changing landscape of the digital world, social media has become an integral part of our lives, which is great as it is what I base my whole business on! Social media plays a huge part in most people’s lives, especially if you are in business. It has revolutionised the way we communicate, connect, and share information, and gives businesses a way to closely target their audience and monitor what’s working.

One fascinating aspect of social media culture is the development and evolution of slang. From the early days of instant messaging (own up, who had a pager all those years ago!) to the current era of hashtags and viral trends, social media slang has undergone a remarkable transformation. Let’s take a closer look at the evolution of social media slang, tracing its journey from “LOL” to “lit.”


Back in the early days of the internet, when dial-up connections ruled the world, (thank god that’s over) acronyms were the backbone of online communication. Phrases like “LOL” (laugh out loud), “ROFL” (rolling on the floor laughing), and “BRB” (be right back) were born out of the need for quick and efficient messaging. These acronyms became synonymous with online conversations, allowing users to convey emotions and reactions with just a few keystrokes. And how many of us confused “LOL ” laugh out loud, with Lots of love… awkward!


As social media platforms started to emerge, the way we communicated online began to shift. Twitter, with its 140-character limit, forced users to be concise and creative with their messages. Hashtags became the new norm, allowing users to categorise content and participate in trending discussions. Phrases like “ICYMI” (in case you missed it), “FTW” (for the win), and “SMH” (shaking my head) gained popularity as shorthand expressions.


The rise of smartphones and the explosion of visual content on platforms like Instagram and Snapchat brought a new dimension to social media slang. Emoticons and emojis became a universal language, adding emotion and context to messages. Instead of typing out “I’m laughing so hard,” a simple “😂” conveyed the same sentiment. Who doesn’t love an emoji… I know I do ✅ Check out the use of emojis on She’s Sassy Instagram


Furthermore, social media platforms birthed their own unique slang that spread like wildfire among users. For instance, on Twitter, users began referring to themselves as “tweeps” (Twitter peeps) and retweeting content they found interesting or amusing. Instagram popularised terms like “insta-worthy” and “throwback Thursday” (#TBT), which became ingrained in the platform’s culture.


However, it was the rise of platforms like Vine, TikTok, and Snapchat that truly revolutionised social media slang. Short-form video content allowed users to be creative, funny, and expressive in entirely new ways. Catchphrases like “on fleek,” “savage,” and “fomo” (fear of missing out) became viral sensations and entered mainstream vernacular.


New phrases and expressions are constantly emerging, often driven by viral trends, memes, and the ever-changing landscape of pop culture. Social media has become a platform where new words and phrases are born, spread like wildfire, and sometimes fade away just as quickly. The evolution of social media slang reflects the fast paced nature of online communication.


From the days of acronyms and hashtags to the visual language of emojis and the influence of short-form videos, social media has transformed the way we express ourselves. Remember all the slang and abbreviations need to be used in the right way on your business accounts, who are you talking to on your socials, who is your audience. If you need help identifying your audience and creating a marketing strategy then get in touch.

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