People who text do it all the time. They communicate in a language that may look Greek to the non texter.

Looking at the texting language reminds me of a lesson I learned years ago. It’s about assuming.

The lesson is this. Take the word “assume”, break it up and you have this:

Ass
U
Me

It translates to, “When You Assume, You Make An “Ass” out of “U” and “Me

Today’s Lesson

I see a lot of assuming going on with regard to acronyms used in blogosphere.

Acronyms and/or initialisms are abbreviations for a group of words. Often the first letter is taken from each word to form a new word or group of letters.

I use them on this blog. I have the NBOTW (New Blog Of The Week) as well as the A.S.K.(Answers Sharing Knowledge) series, and I often shorten Blogging Without A Blog to “BWAB”. I try to remember to “spell them out”, but sometimes I forget.

Bloggers make assumptions and use acronyms and/or initialisms in their posts quite frequently. Some of the examples are:

CSS = Cascading Style Sheets
HTML = Hyper Text Markup Language
SEO = Search Engine Optimization
SERPs = Search Engine Results Pages
FAQ = Frequently Asked Questions
WP = WordPress
XML = EXtensible Markup Language.
IP Address = Internet Protocol
URL = Uniform Resource Locator
http = HyperText Transfer Protocol

Then in comments we’ll see:

@ = at
BFF = Best friends forever
BTW = By the way
OMG = Oh my God
IMHO = In my humble opinion
LOL = Laugh(ing) out loud
ROTLF = Rolling on the floor laughing
LMAO = Laugh(ing) my ass off

We assume our visitors know what we’re saying.

Some won’t.

The first time I saw “BTW” I had to do a search for its meaning.

When I read a blog that is filled with undefined acronyms I feel intimidated. I feel I’m being excluded. I often leave the blog without commenting and rarely go back.

Sometimes when I’ve read comments I’ve felt like an intruder. Between the comment author and the blog author there appears to be a “secret” language.

You’ve probably seen it, or may even use the “language”.

Although I’ve learned the definitions of most of the acronyms and/or initialisms, and sometimes use them, I wonder about others. Do they know the meanings? Are they feeling left out? Do they feel like an intruder in a comment section?

I hope not, But, if it happened to me, I know it can happen to others.

Today’s Assignment

Based on your blog topic(s), do you often used acronyms and/or initialisms and assume your readers know what you’re talking about?

When you see an acronym and/or an initialism and don’t know the definition, how to you feel? Do you look it up?

Since I use acronyms and/or initialisms here on BWAB (Blogging Without A Blog), I’d love to hear what you have to say.

.


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Look Who's Talking
  1. Kelvin KaoNo Gravatar says:

    I understand all those abbreviations, but then again, I’m a blogger and computer programmer. While acronyms might make some people feel excluded, but think about it. All they have to do is look up a few acronyms and they can automatically feel like a part of the community just like that. Is it a bad thing? Not always!

    Kelvin Kao´s last blog post..A Muppet Christmas: Letters to Santa

  2. Hi Barbara,
    I really do not use the new generation acronyms on my blog as they are mainly prevalent among youngsters who often chat or send/receive a lot of SMS on their phone. I am not totally against them though, and depending on their respective audience’ age group, there’s nothing wrong if some of the bloggers use them.

    However, I use a lot of standard acronyms in my blog and most of the time when I use a not-so-popular acronym I also put its expansion in brackets.

    Cheers,
    Ajith

    Ajith Edassery´s last blog post..Ten Unethical Blog Visitor Behaviors those are worse than George Bush Shoe-Throwing Episode!

  3. JeanneNo Gravatar says:

    I have a daughter who texts all the time. So, I’m quite familiar with all the acronyms and if I’m not….I google it! Whatever did we do without google?? Oh, one you forgot that I see frequently….is IRL….In Real Life.

    I’m going to have to check out some of the books you recommend….after the holidays…right now I’m just swamped!!

    Jeanne´s last blog post..Cody’s Poem

  4. MarelisaNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara: The other day someone left a comment on my blog that said: “I <3 this post”. I had to go on twitter and ask what on earth “<3” meant (it turns out out that if you tilt your head to the right it’s a sideways heart, so it means “I love this post”). But I don’t mind acronyms, I think it’s like learning a new language 🙂

    Marelisa´s last blog post..Five Ways to Keep Your Spirits Up During the Holidays

  5. Eric HammNo Gravatar says:

    If I don’t know one, I’ll just Google it. I figure I’ll slowly, but surely learn them all and then stop feeling like an outsider. I actually really like acronyms and think they are a great way to speed up content output. But I also agree that we need to keep it to a minimum if we want to include everyone in the conversation.

    I don’t think you go overboard, Barbara. I never feel like I can’t take in your content. Eric.

    Eric Hamm´s last blog post..The Rats Stole My ‘Stuff’!

  6. Pete and I are assured of getting responses from our kids if we text them. How lame is that? I long ago decided to meet up with them in their world rather than have even less contact than I preferred. Other parents, especially if the kids are out on their own like ours are, we know do the same. So I’ve learned most of the acronyms. They and their friends laugh when I say something that they would say.

    One that stumped me for YEARS in comments, though, was FWIW. Finally, I figured it out, for what it’s worth. 😀

    Betsy and Pete´s last blog post..AS I WANDER OUT UNDER THE SKY…

  7. Al at 7PNo Gravatar says:

    Perhaps one of my favorite “new-generation” acronym is FTW. At first I thought it was a not-so-family-friendly acronym, but those who use Reddit and Digg might recognize it as “for the win”. It’s like the game-winning shot, or the closing argument of the winning case. And often times, it’s done in humor.

    I <3 the internets! (sic)

    Al at 7P´s last blog post..533,000 Is Too Much

  8. ACK! I would say that am “good” about defining any acronyms I use – then I see that I use an acronym in my latest title post! BUSTED!! MSIE stands for Microsoft Internet Explorer and I just go on like everyone knows that. Thanks for the mirror – even though I don’t like what I see!

    Kathy @ Virtual Impax´s last blog post..Warning: Serious MSIE Security Risk Discovered – AGAIN!

  9. Writer DadNo Gravatar says:

    It’s like learning a new language. If you want to skip rope, you’ve gotta practice. No big deal at all.

    Writer Dad´s last blog post..Bang!

  10. I’m one of the users of initialisms especially in my mobile text messages. I had even taken the liberty to dedicate one post in my blog (the latest one) for one abbreviation that is very dear to me. 🙂

    Daniel Richard´s last blog post..10 Non-Words or Phrases Featuring The Letters ORD!

  11. I just look them up. Or I assume they mean something else. Like Al I thought FTW meant something completely different. And I used to think that LOL was lots of love.

    Kim Woodbridge´s last blog post..Twitter Holiday Contest – Win a Free 2.7 Upgrade

  12. chrisNo Gravatar says:

    I try to avoid acronyms when I write for the masses. In addition, every time I post, I would always keep in mind that someone might be new to my blog, therefore I craft my post in such a way that allows new visitors to understand what I’m writing about.

    chris´s last blog post..I Shall Return

  13. JodithNo Gravatar says:

    On my blog, the only acronym that I use frequently is MS for Microsoft, which pretty much every secretary knows if it’s paired with Word, Excel, or Outlook.

    Now, when I’m gaming, I use all kinds of acronyms. BRB, LOL, AFK, etc. But again, I’m using them in a context where pretty much everyone knows the meaning of them.

    I think you have to consider your audience when using acronyms.

    *laughs* at my new job, they use an acronyn that NO ONE knows the meaning of. I mean, they know what it refers to, but no one can remember what the words for it are. It’s just the TDC. And, of course, being from Texas, I hear TDC and thing Texas Department of Corrections. Which isn’t what it stands for here…at least not that anyone knows.

    Jodith´s last blog post..8 Tips for using Outlook’s Out of Office Assistant

  14. Barbara –

    Although I do know what a lot of the acronyms mean, I don’t often use them unless I am in a situation where I know whomever I’m “talking” to understands them. And even then, I try not to.

    It just annoys me. 😉

    I don’t think it’s a bad idea when others use them. It’s easy to find out the meanings online somewhere if I don’t know what one is. What annoys me most, though, is when they are over-used – for example, when an entire sentence or paragraph is written that way. Used sparingly, I don’t mind as much.

    ~ Annie

    Annie Anderson´s last blog post..December reflections

  15. melanieNo Gravatar says:

    I dont use them often. Not because they exclude people but because they are annoying. The odd LOL and OMG is ok on a blog and I have even started using them. I am a huge user of many acronyms/abbreviations because I am an avid texter now and have been an obsessive mmopger (online gamer) for 10 years and acronyms/abbreviations are necessary because of time factors in both situations, however, in blogging there really isnt the same time factor issue. With your own site specific ones like BWAB, I dont feel intimidated but challenged to find out what it means. It is another very interesting topic. Thank you, I really enjoy looking at these task that you set for us and having to think about how I feel about them and then seeing how other people respond to the same task.

    melanie´s last blog post..I thought I had lost my friend

  16. PatriciaNo Gravatar says:

    I don’t use the acronyms much at all because I feel like it is a waste of time to keep looking them up on Google…so I do like license plate reading and attempt to guess what someone is saying. This can make me LOL….and then I remember them longer in my guess meaning!
    But like Betsy, one of my children only text me and I want to stay connected with her so I keep working at it, but then she leaves out punctuation in her college papers and when I edit it makes for a great deal of work. Some folks don’t know any better.

    I think my writing style was trained in an extremely formal manner and it is work for me to relax my style. Cutting down to about 500 words per post is sometimes excruciating.
    I was trained to make 3 points and expand so that people would not assume or confuse my meaning.

    This morning I have one commenter asking for clarification so I feel my cut back was too harsh and my meaning was lost in one area of my writing… I loved the assume reminder..

    Another good post..
    I would just say that I am one of those readers who reads every word and thinks about what the writer is trying to say…some bloggers are just too hard to understand – that and too much “blue” language usually gets me to hit the stumble button for I don’t like it

    Patricia´s last blog post..Anatomy of a Fat Cell

  17. I try not to use too many acronyms. I feel like you that it will alienate new people. I try to write everything as if they are new to my blog. This might get old for some of my readers that have been with me for awhile, but I think most of them stick with me.

    Karl Staib – Your Work Happiness Matters´s last blog post..Day 16 of 30 – No Complaining

  18. DavinaNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara. I don’t mind acronyms. I use them when I’m in a hurry but prefer the actual words. Usually if I can grasp the meaning of what the person is trying to say I skip over the acronym. If I see that same one being used a lot I eventually figure it out. If I don’t and I keep seeing it, my curiosity gets the better of me and I look it up.

    Davina´s last blog post..A Positively Dysfunctional Christmas

  19. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi All – I’m in the middle of writing Christmas cards so I’ll be back after awhile to reply to your comments.

    Happy Blogging! 🙂

  20. Chase MarchNo Gravatar says:

    I really don’t like this new text message lexicon. I understand why it is necessary in texting but do we really have to carry it over to another media forms. I say no!

    I sometimes use short forms when messaging my brother but we always had our own way of talking so we both get it.

    I guess there is a time and place for it. I just do see that place as the blogosphere.

    Chase March´s last blog post..The Choir

  21. Linda AbbitNo Gravatar says:

    Hi,

    I don’t use texting abbreviations on my blog — at least I don’t think I do. I do use it in emails with family & friends, and maybe even in comments on others’ blogs if appropriate.

    My son is 19 and is up on all the lingo, so if I don’t know one, he’ll fill me in. He told us at Thanksgiving vacation that “texting is flirting” — at least when he’s texting the gals at his college! I never looked at it that way.

    I kinda like the abbreviations — it is like a new language! I think it’s fine on your blog, Barbara. No one would ever feel excluded here, that’s for sure!

    Linda Abbit´s last blog post..Inspiring Quotes for Caregivers: On Hope — 12/17/08

  22. CarolineNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara,

    I rarely use acronyms. Maybe I am too old (LOL!). It does seem “generational” to me. I am not a texter either. I know most of the popular acronyms…but it can be a bit much! Great post!

    Caroline´s last blog post..Is it time to let go?

  23. J.D. MeierNo Gravatar says:

    I remember one of The Odd Couple episodes where Felix gets all dramatic about the “ass” of “u” and “me”, and it’s stuck with me always.

    Great rundown on TLAs and FLAs!
    (three letter acronyms and four letter acronyms).

    J.D. Meier´s last blog post..My Favorite Personal Development Books

  24. Haha this was a funny post Barbara. 🙂

    I don’t use acronyms often, but I do use them. It’s like a foreign language! When I just started blogging, I had to sometimes look things up (by goggling them). Now I’m pretty much familiar with most of them.

    I love your Christmas tree widget, by the way. 🙂

  25. RobinNo Gravatar says:

    Hi there Barbara – I know exactly how you feel! And it is why I don’t use acronyms in my posts, and not very often in comments. I think if something is worth saying, it’s worth writing out in words – it depends on the target audience, though, I suppose.

    I didn’t know what LOL meant for ages (I first saw it in emails from a very web-savvy friend). Later on I got ROFL in a comment and I Googled it. But I feel the same as you about blogs I visit using them – I feel excluded and leave.

    Robin´s last blog post..What If? The Movie – Clip 2

  26. Are we sure that <3 isn’t an ice cream cone with two scoops?

    I use http://www.acronymfinder.com to look up acronyms. It’s nice because you can specify the context. A given acronym could have different meanings in the government, science, business, etc.

    Hunter Nuttall´s last blog post..How To Give And Receive Advice (With Minimal Casualties)

  27. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Kelvin – You’re right, it’s not always a bad thing. We can look them up and learn.

    Hi Ajith – Haha! I had to look up SMS (Short Message Service). I know what you mean. Youngsters are big on shortening words.

    Hi Jeanne – It’s great when we have kids or grandkids to explain the “language” to us. Thanks for teaching me IRL – in real life.

    Hi Marelisa – Well, that’s a new one 1<3. When I first looked at it I thought it meant “less than three”.

    Hi Eric – Yep! Like Jeanne said, “what would we do if we didn’t have Google”?

    I hope I don’t go overboard. With the name of my blog being so long, I feel I should shorten it at times. Using an acronym is the easiest way to accomplish that.

    Hi Betsy – That is a fabulous idea – to meet your kids in their world. It means a lot to them and you end up being “cool” parents.

    FWW = For what it’s worth. Who knew?

    Hi Al – Haha! I agree, some acronyms don’t appear to be family friendly until we take the time to learn them. I like that, FTW = for the win.

    Hi Kathy – How ironic. It’s a good thing you spelled that out for me as I would not have known that MSIE stands for Microsoft Internet Explorer.

    Hi Writer Dad – Yes it is like learning a new language.

    Hi Daniel – It’s amazing that you could dedicate a complete post to one sequence of letters. I just read it. Congratulations on your heroisms and your service to your country. You sound like an “ExtraORDinary” person. 🙂

    Hi Kim – When I was researching for this post, it did say that LOL also can mean lots of love.

    Hi Chris – You’re right. If someone is new to our blog (or even new to the internet), we do want them to understand what we’re talking about.

    Hi Jodith – Great point. Many businesses use acronyms and assume others know what they mean. The first time I saw ODOT I was really confused. Then I found out it stands for Oregon Department of Transportation. Now I use it all the time in our business.

    Hi Annie – Like you, I’ve been annoyed with them, too.

    The second half of your comment reminded me of an email I received from a young relative of mine. It was written in “text” language and it took me quite some time before I figured out what was being said.

    Hi Melanie – Thank you for your kind words. You bring up a good point. Blogs don’t have the same time issues as do text messages or for gaming (as you said). I’m not a Twitterer, but I’d be curious to know if the use of acronyms are prevalent there.

    Hi Patricia – Thank you. You bring up a good point. Depending on how we learned to write will dictate our blogging style. It can be very difficult to pare our posts down if we’ve learned to explain things thoroughly, whereas if we learn to write using a lot of acronyms, we set ourselves up for being misunderstood.

    Hi Karl – I was thinking about what you said. Granted some of our readers may ask “why is s/he spelling that out AGAIN”, but for a new reader, it’s necessary to explain.

    Hi Davina – Like you, I don’t always look up acronyms the first time I see them, but when they keep popping up, to Google I go.

    Hi Chase – I’m glad you showed up to share your viewpoint. As a teacher, I’m guessing it could get maddening. And that’s a great question, should it carry over to other media forms?

    Hi Linda – Hmmmm! Texting is flirting. Interesting concept.

    I hope no one feels excluded here. I try my hardest to not let that happen.

    Hi Caroline – Like you, I’m not a texter either. I agree, in some cases it is too much.

    Hi J.D. – That’s a good lesson to remember, isn’t it. “Don’t assume”.

    Haha! It’s a good thing you explained those acronyms as I would have never figured them out.

    Hi Vered – Thank you! Like you, when I started blogging I looked up a lot of acronyms. It takes time to learn they all, doesn’t it?

    Hi Robin – Well said. “If something is worth saying, it’s worth writing out in words”.

    You have me thinking. Our “target” audience undoubtedly has a lot to do with how we write, however, how do we really know who our target audience is if they don’t comment?

  28. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Hunter – That’s too funny. “Are we sure that <3 isn’t an ice cream cone with two scoops?” It does look like that, doesn’t it?

    Thanks for the link to the acronym finder. And you’re right, given acronyms can have different meanings in different professions.

    I recently found out that BWAB (Incorporated) is a “diversified holding company”. And here I am, using the same letters as an acronym for my blog about blogging. Who knew?

  29. Hi Barbara! Actually I happen to know the acronymns that you posted, and I was surprised to learn that there are people who don’t know what they stand for. As Ajith pointed out, it’s prevalent among the younger generation so that might be why – my friends and I use it often in texting/msging online. As for my blog, I’ll make sure to spell out the full name of the acronymn the first time I use it, so as not to alienate visitors. I for one definitely get slightly annoyed when I see an acronymn on another site and have no clue what it stands for.

    Celes | EmbraceLiving.Net´s last blog post..6 Reasons Why Being a Perfectionist Leads You to Failure

  30. NaturalNo Gravatar says:

    you should have seen my face when i read the title of your post, i was like what the, then i had to put myself in text mode. i had no idea what serp meant.

    i don’t use them a lot, but if i do, i try to remember to spell it out as well. for simple ones, like btw, i do assume that people know and lol. funny thing is a young adult thought ROFL was running out for lunch. now ain’t that something. lol

    when in doubt, spell it out.,

    Natural´s last blog post..You’re So Vain You Probably Think This Post Is About You

  31. I work in the government, so I know the sheer horror associated with acronym over use. In my blog, I rarely use acronyms. And if I do, the first time I would do it this way, Urbane Lion (UL). Then I would use UL.

    BTW (sorry, couldn’t resist), there is something similar that drives me batty. It’s making up cutesy words. The one that currently bothers me is ‘I heart ‘. Why on earth can we not just say ‘I love ‘? Are we afraid of the word love?

    Repeat after me, folks … I love … I love … I love. See? Nothing bad happened. Nobody got offended, or thought you were being too familiar, or were coming onto them. It even saves typing time because love has one less letter than heart.

    /end of Panther rant

    Urban Panther´s last blog post..Growing up golfing

  32. @Barbara – Yes, that “text” speak annoys The Teenager, too. Fortunately, we homeschooled for long enough that she got her mother’s love of language and writing. She often gets upset with her friends for using it when they write or text her.

    @Urban Panther – Oh! I so agree with you! “I heart” is one of those things that drives me batty. Cutesy words are so obnoxious. Even more obnoxious than acronyms. 😉

    Really. I mean, just say what you mean, already.

    And I probably got my fill of acronyms when I was in the Navy. The government uses them for EVERYTHING! And then some.

    Ugh!

    ~ Annie

    Annie Anderson´s last blog post..Are my jeans shrinking yet?

  33. Really? Oh then I must have started that meaning of LOL 😉

    Kim Woodbridge´s last blog post..5 Unpopular (Anti) Social Articles

  34. I typically don’t use them in my posts, with the exception of css and html; I don’t want to confuse anyone.

    However, I tend to use LOL in the comment section at times.

    If I see someone using them too much in the post, I’ll usually leave. I can’t remember what many of them mean.

    I just looked up at your title and noticed BFF – had no idea what that meant.

    John Hoff – eVentureBiz´s last blog post..Understanding The Psychology Of Your Website Visitors

  35. Mac JonesNo Gravatar says:

    I’m aware of the technical abbreviations but many thanks for the non-tech ones. I read forums on occasion and have always wondered what half of the terms meant. Now I know!

  36. I don’t really ever use such things. And to be honest I don’t really care if I know what they mean or not when I come across them. If I feel it is important I will look it up but for the most it is not worth the bother. Now WTF did I not LIU B4 I PTS on TMFB?

    BTW i MMOTU if you get my meaning!

    Oh and because commentluv is not working ATM I shall shamelessly plug a post I want more comments on ITOK

    http://thethreedogblog.com/the-greatest-dog-story-in-the-world-be-part-of-it.html

  37. I’m just messing.
    It’s the way of the world. Things move on and sometimes you have to learn to keep up. I learn what I need to get along in a very quickly evolving environment. I am not really a lover of these things but you do what you gotta do.

    Take care.

  38. Cath LawsonNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara – I try not to use them. But it’s so easy to forget. I’ve probably used every single one of them on my blog over the last couple of weeks.

    The one I struggled with was the one for the Novel Writing Month competition. I don’t know how folk remembered how to spell it – it just seems too long to me.

    When I first used forums, I struggled with acronyms but someone put a sticky of all the acronyms used on that forum at the top of the page, so I learned them from there. Looking back – it probably didn’t do a lot for the forum owners search engine rankings for a lot of words, because they seemed to use acronyms for just about everything.

    Cath Lawson´s last blog post..Live The Dream In Vancouver, Canada

  39. JannieNo Gravatar says:

    I love how you did the title on this! Very clever.

    I use just a few of the acronmys, perhaps if I texted I’d end up using more and more frequently.

    DYFYBT? Did you fling….. might become a popular one.

    Jannie´s last blog post..Yeah, Cindy Lou Who?

  40. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Celes – Welcome to the BWAB community. Yes, it is easy to assume others know what the acronyms stand for. Spelling them out the first time we use them in a post is a sure way not to alienate our visitors.

    Hi Natural – That’s right. “When it doubt, spell it out”. I love you example of ROFL – running out for lunch. Hey, it makes sense.

    Hi Panther – With you working in the government than you obviously are seeing more acronyms than you care to. Here in the states they “acronym” nearly everything. It appears Canada might be the same.

    Hi Annie – That’s sweet how your daughter gets upset with her friends for using texting language. Your home schooling has definitely paid off.

    Hi Kim – LOL 🙂

    Hi John – HaHa! I had to look up BFF too. Oddly enough, I hear the term being used a lot on television shows.

    Hi Mac – Welcome to the BWAB community. Yes, now you know some of them. Unfortunately there are probably hundreds more.

    Hi Three Dog Blogger – I’m going to assume the acronyms you used are “clean”. 🙂

    You’re right. We do have to do what we gotta do – to keep up. BTW, I’ll come an check your latest post.

    Hi Catherine – That was a good idea to have a sticky at the beginning of the forum, but like you said, if the majority of words used were acronyms, it would be tough to get found via search engines.

    Hi Jannie – Thank you. Yes, for you “did you fling your bra today”(DYFYBT), would be a great one for you. BTW, have you thought of using that as your tag line/motto?

  41. LindsayNo Gravatar says:

    I REALLY hate text chat! Some people have gotten to the point that even a decently experienced texter can’t read them. My sister’s ex boyfriend used to text me occasionally. It would read as follows

    yo ur sis n m r gng to se a movie. wnna cum?

    Translation:
    Hey, Your sister and me are going to see a movie, Want to come?

    Yea, the ONLY word he actually typed out was movie. He was able to type out MOVIE, but not the word ME!

    When i first entered the FORUM world, i was REALLY confused. IMHO was one i didnt understand, and the most RECENT ones that STILL confuse me are DH

    WHAT does DH mean>?

    honestly, i hardly EVER type in “text chat” and if i do, i usually is the BASICS. Like OMG, or UR..But then again, I have an iphone and a full keypad. The whole text chat on a full sized keyboard seems silly.

    Also, i’m not sure if people already commented about this, but it is severely effecting students now. Teachers are reporting that when they correct papers, they consistently have to remind the writer to capitalize the “I” and the use of commas, something that we learned in elementary school.

    Lindsay´s last blog post..Glam Shoot with my wife

  42. ShirleyNo Gravatar says:

    Yep, I am one of those people who use acronyms, all the time. Fortunately, I do have an acronym feature on my blog. So if users hover over an acronym, they’ll get a tooltip with what it stands for.

    But yes, I am trying to use the full words because acronyms alienate a good portion of your audience.

    Great tips. 🙂

    Btw, now that you have a complete acronym dictionary, whenever people have any problems understanding, you can point them to this post. LAUGH OUT LOUD… (I so much prefer to use lol.)

  43. Mac JonesNo Gravatar says:

    Shirley,

    I like the idea of having a ‘tool tip’ for an acronym which tells you what it stands for – I’ve spent many hours staring at a series of letters trying to figure out what they mean!

  44. BingoNo Gravatar says:

    I use them sometimes but mostly avoid them in-copy: I feel that they’re more for instant chat or texting. In our niche, however, they are very common.
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    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Bingo,

      Like you, I find using abbreviations in blogs can confuse our readers even though they are commonplace in texting or instant chat. I don’t like to assume others know what I’m trying to say.