Gen Z Slang

In recent years, the internet along with social media has been a platform for people to share their ideas, life stories and design their own identities. With people spending so much time online, their passions, interests, and creativity have resulted in various new words and terminology, which has been popularized by the youth of Generation Z. Already in 2021, we witness the explosion of lingo and language, which will continue to grow in the following years. As such, being familiar with Gen Z slang should quickly become part of your everyday conversation.

What is Gen Z Slang?

Put shortly, Gen Z slang is a combination of words and terms used by Generation Z for communication purposes. Also referred to as digital native language, Gen Z slang is mainly used in written communication and encompasses digital and physical themes. This type of language has become popular due to the digital revolution and the way it has shaped media, communication and technology. As a result, Gen Z slang is a representation of the views, feelings, and lifestyles of the youth of Generation Z.

Slang Meaning in Gen Z

Slang meaning among digital natives can be divided into several categories.

Internet Slang

Internet slang stems from a combination of common abbreviations and shortcuts used in text messaging and chat platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Slack. Here are some examples:

• Bae: Bae stands for “before anyone else” and denotes something or someone special and beloved.

• AF: AF is short for “as f*ck” and is often used to intensify an emotion.

• OG: OG is short for “original gangster” and is used to refer to original, experienced and often influential members of a certain social group.

Emoji Slang

Emoji slang is a type of communication used via emojis. In this type of language, different emojis substitute words to construct sentences and phrases. Here are some examples:

• :heart_eyes:➡️ Love

• :fire:➡️ Something is hot or cool

• :rolling_on_the_floor_laughing:➡️ Something is so funny

Word Replacement

Digital natives also use word replacement to form words or phrases that often have nothing to do with the original word or phrase. Here are some examples:

• Sus: Used as an adjective, sus means suspicious.

• Tea: Tea is used to denote gossip.

• Thicc: Thicc stands for thick and is usually used as a compliment for someone with a curvaceous body.

Impacts of Gen Z Slang

• Engaged Youth: Gen Z Slang is driving the youth to engage more actively in conversations about important current topics such as politics, societal issues and cultural changes.

• Keeping up with trends: As with any language, Gen Z slang is ever-changing to adjust to current trends and topics.

• Social Acceptance: Gen Z slang has made it easier for digital native youth to express themselves, both online and in real life.

• Viral Content: Through memes and other forms of content, Gen Z slang has helped to spread topics and messages quickly across the globe.

As a type of hybrid language, Gen Z slang is taking the world of communication by storm. Through this language, digital natives are able to express themselves and understand others better. While it may not become a dominating language in the future, it has already left its mark in the world of digital culture. Therefore, it is important to stay aware of the ever-evolving Gen Z slang and use it according to the current trends.

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