Twitter’s tight character-count limit can lead to a lot of brevity in speech. Expressing ideas needs to be done succinctly, and as such, acronyms like LOL, OMG and IDK are very popular. A study conducted by We Are Social ranks the top 50 social acronyms.
The study tracked the most commonly used acronyms on Twitter over a period of three months. During that period 610 million mentions contained the acronyms, and LOL was far and away the winner, with over 263 million mentions.
It’s possible that much hilarity was generated, but more likely, LOL has just become a standard response on the Internet. Then again, LMAO (laughing my ass off) came in second, with almost 68 million uses, so perhaps Twitter is a very funny place.
OMG, IDK and WTF rounded out the top five, with 65.65 million, 29.19 million and 28.65 million mentions respectively.
Twitter memes, like #TBT (Throwback Thursday) also made strong showings. TBT saw more than 6.76 million mentions, and other memes such as WomanCrush Wednesday (WCW), ManCrush Monday (MCM) and Outfit of The Day (OOTD) saw more than 5.18 million, 3.56 million and 725,000 mentions respectively.
“Abbreviations hold an undeniable appeal for social media users to communicate with one another with minimal effort and speed,” Edward Kitchingman, research and insight director for We Are Social, said in a statement. “Like the language used in texts naturally developed in response to efficiency, so it has on social media.”