Texting slang used in 2020

5 min read
Text Slangs

Over the 4th of July weekend, President Donald Trump tried to send patriotic texts to his voter base. His campaign was testing the water to see how their voter contact program would work. It is a way to contact small donors to raise money and, later, in November, remind supporters to get to the polls.

The plan failed. Verizon and T-Mobile accidentally blocked the SPAM-like texts. Trump’s campaigners are already working on fixing the problem. If you’re Republican, you may start getting texts from the president soon.

Meanwhile, in Kentucky, contact tracers are using texts to communicate with people who might be spreading or have been exposed to coronavirus.

Whether this method of communication is used by the president, the people on the ground quelling the spread of COVID-19, or our friends. It has become a vital way to share information in an informal way. At times, though, it can be hard to understand what a text means. You may not understand the context or tone of a message. Even worse, the person texting you may use unfamiliar slang. Here are some of the terms you might see or use while texting in 2020.

All the kids are saying it…

Phone Texting

Boomers, Millennials, and Gen Z or Zoomers miscommunicate with each other at times. This may in fact be because Gen Z is speaking (or in this case texting) a different language from the rest of us. Here are some translations for those of us who are old codgers.

Sksksksksksk is the new way to laugh in a text or chat. Earlier generations may remember lol and hahaha, but the cool kids prefer spitting apparently.

Tea is gossip. If someone spills the tea, it means that they’ve shared a piece of gossip with you. If they ask you for some tea, well it’s your turn to dish.

Many people have complained that texting is the downfall of written language. No one uses punctuation, and spelling has gone out of the window. Well now, instead of using punctuation, people are spelling it out. Who understands Gen Z? To add emphasis at the end of a statement, text periodt, as in “I’m not going periodt.”

Mewd may look like something your cat said, but in fact, it is what your children are texting when they mean to say “mood.” Remember when we said that spelling has gone out of the window? It’s not just that no one cares about spelling correctly, all the cool kids are intentionally spelling things incorrectly. If someone makes a salty, or grumpy, comment, let them know their folly by texting back, “That’s a mewd!”

When you make a mistake, acknowledge it by texting, “Big oof!” This is approximately the same as “My bad,” but hipper.

Something that makes you feel uncomfortable is cringey and might even make you exclaim: “Big yikes!”

Home Text

Will Smith is an A-lister. An example of someone from the B-list might be Kit Harrington since he’s never headlined a movie, but been very successful on television. The names of the people on the C-list belong to reality stars, and, honestly, we don’t remember any to write here. So who’s on the D-list? Have you ever heard of Skincare with Hyram? Exactly. Famous instagrammers and influencers are the people you find on this one.

When you let all your friends know about how little you got down at work, you can text them that it was because of all the BTO.  This means Bathroom Time Off and refers to escaping responsibilities to play mindless games on your cell phone and scroll endlessly in the john.

Want to tell someone how good he or she looks in his or her new fit or outfit. Just text them to tell them they’re snappin’. Go one step further and text “You’re straight fire!” to say they’re too sexy for their shirts and cats and whatnot.

Athome Text

In general, anything that you like is fire. If you think it’s amazing, you might exclaim, “Wig!” This is short for “I’m blowing my wig!”

What’s the opposite of snappin’? Being a potato obviously. If someone texts you that you’re one of these tubers, answer by saying, “That’s a mewd!” They’ve just told you that you’re boring and unfeeling. If you call yourself a potato, you think you’re lumpy and unattractive.

Spun in Gen Z is equivalent to “high” in Millennial. Lit means drunk or having a fantastic time as in “What a lit party!”

If there’s something you don’t want to text about, just let your friends know that the topic is clipped. You know how movie editors cut scenes from movies? Well now you can clip parts of your life—for example, that weekend in Vegas.

‘Rona Speak

Rona Speak

Nothing has inspired so much slang as Coronavirus or as some say Miss Rona. 2019? That was pre-rona. What’s the first thing you’re planning to do post-rona? Here are some of the fun things people are saying and texting about the pandemic:

The rona got you down? Fix yourself a quarantini! This is what you drink at happy hour when happy hour is at home.

There are so many ways to break up, but the newest is zumping. If the pandemic is keeping you from telling her face-to-face that it’s over you’ll have to get creative. If you let her know over zoom it’s zumping.

Coronavirus has taken its toll on relationships. People aren’t just zumping—they’re also getting covidivorces. Some relationships just can’t survive being together all day, every day for months at a time.

Other people have taken the chance to get to cozier as couples. Now, some families are expecting new arrivals—these babies will be Gen C or Coronials.

You may have missed your summer vacation this year. Your work has been temporarily cancelled and you’re stuck inside taking care of your kids. Pools, museums, parks and libraries are closed. If your new hobby is disinfecting grocery packaging you are probably experiencing a coronacation in place of a vacation.

Meanwhile covidiots are walking around breathing on people, refusing to wear masks and spreading false information about coronavirus.

These are just a few of the new words people are using in their texts. It will be interesting to see how this year of doom plays out in its second half. What other new slang will it bring us?