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Thousands of parents do not understand the Internet slang

By on March 11, 2021 0

BT has surveyed over 4,500 UK adults to see if they understand some modern and aging internet slang. The results showed that a full 85% could not correctly identify some of the jargons.

For example, 65% of parents think the acronym KMS means “keep my secret” when it actually means “kill yourself” – usually used in jokes, not the literal threat of suicide. Likewise, most did not know that “99” meant “parents stopped watching” and only 4% knew that MIA was a reference to bulimia nervosa.

Emoticons were also causing problems. For example, more than half of the respondents did not know that a monkey with paws on its mouth could mean “I won’t tell anyone.”

At least the older ones coped better with some of the older slangs. More than half of the parents knew that “182” means “I hate you”, “WTTP” means “you want to exchange photos?” and “LMIRL” is “let’s meet in real life”.

The quiz was conducted to promote Internet Safety Day and Internet safety in general. Pete Oliver, BT’s Managing Director of Commercial, Marketing and Digital said:

“For young people growing up with technology, this new language comes naturally, but leaves some adults unsure what their children are saying online. As we celebrate Safer Internet Day 2017, we believe it is important for adults to talk to young people about how they use social media and online chats. ”

Carolyn Bunting, CEO of the charity Internet Matters, added: “Children’s internet use is growing rapidly. While it’s unrealistic to expect parents to understand every bit of internet slang their kids will ever see, internet safety starts with a conversation.

“It’s important for parents to talk to their children about their digital world, including what they may experience online, and the types of issues to be aware of, from cyberbullying to privacy.”

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