FBI's 83-page glossary on internet slang filled with obscurities

Research unit's glossary filled with obscurities including PMYMHMMFSWGAD

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 19 June, 2014, 10:29pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 19 June, 2014, 10:34pm

The internet is full of strange and bewildering neologisms, which anyone but a text-addled teen would struggle to understand.

So the FBI - apparently not content to trawl Urban Dictionary - compiled a glossary of internet slang. An 83-page glossary. Containing nearly 3,000 terms.

The glossary was recently made public through a Freedom of Information request by the group MuckRock, which posted the PDF, called "Twitter shorthand", online.

Despite its name, this isn't just Twitter slang: As the FBI's Intelligence Research Support Unit explains in the introduction, it's a primer on shorthand used across the internet, including in "instant messages, Facebook and Myspace".

The FBI's research unit then promises the list will prove useful both professionally and "for keeping up with your children and/or grandchildren".

Minor gaffes could be forgiven, however, if the glossary itself was actually good. Instead, it throws up obscurities such as ALOTBSOL ("always look on the bright side of life") and AMOG ("alpha male of group") within the first 10 entries.

ALOTBSOL has been tweeted fewer than 500 times in the eight-year history of Twitter. AMOG has been tweeted far more often, but usually in Spanish, as a misspelling of "amor" and "amigo".

Among the other head-scratching terms the FBI considers can't-miss internet slang: AYFKMWTS ("are you f****** kidding me with this s***?) - 990 tweets; BFFLTDDUP ("best friends for life until death do us part") - 414 tweets; BOGSAT ("bunch of guys sitting around talking") - 144 tweets; and PMYMHMMFSWGAD ("pardon me, you must have mistaken me for someone who gives a damn") - 128 tweets.