New to Twitter? Here are 10 Twitter Slangs and What They Actually Mean

Fri, 28 Aug 2020

“OMG! What did your boyfriend do this time? Is there a receipt? Spill the tea, sis!”


Wait, what?


If you’re someone who’s new to the internet or learned English formally from school or a language course, the words above probably make little to no sense. While it’s rare to find it in popular articles or blog posts, you’ll find a lot of these abbreviations, slangs, and phrases scattered all over the social media, especially Twitter.


The reason is simple; it’s because the lingo people use on the internet is different from real-life conversations. Moreover, Twitter’s limitations of 280 characters push people to convey their thoughts and emotions as economically as possible. Hence, born slangs and abbreviations.


To help you keep up with the ever-growing lingo Gen Z and millennials use, here we’ve garnered a list of 10 Twitter slangs, what they actually mean, and how to use it.



To put it simply, tea is gossip; hot gossips, particularly. You can give tea, spill tea, or sip tea, depending on where you stand in the discussion. Are you the one who tells the gossip? Or the one who receives it?


The term was originated from the ball culture, which is where African-American LGBTQ+ communities in the 80s and 90s celebrated their queerness in New York City.


Example: “Where did you know that Justin cheated on Selena? Spill the tea!”

Meaning: The speaker asks the other person to give them information about Justin and Selena cheating gossip.



Shook is the past tense form of shake, and used to describe a range of emotions from fear, rage, to elation. The term itself was popularized by the 90s R&B and Hip-Hop music and got mainstream when the renowned comedian Christine Sydelko said “I am shooketh!” in 2017.


Example: “When my crush looked at me this morning I was so shook!”

Meaning: The person was shocked when their crush glanced at them that morning.



And nope, this is not related to actual salt.


Salty is often used to describe something upsetting or annoying, hence people often use it to refer to bitter behaviour. So, if someone is acting so salty towards you, they’re probably mad at you.


Example: “My brother beat me again in Mario Kart. I’m so salty right now.”

Meaning: The speaker’s brother won against them in Mario Kart and they feel upset by it.



According to the Daily Dot, the slang mood is originated from Black culture and is used to describe a photo, video, gif, or tweet that is highly relatable. For example, when you feel sad, this Kermit meme is a big mood.



We all have to be accountable for what we said or did. When you want to spill a reliable tea, you have to obtain a convincing receipt. So, in short, a receipt is proof, and it is originated from Black culture.


Example: “No way! Did she lie to us? Do you have a receipt?”

Meaning: The speaker is baffled to know that her friend lied on her, hence she asks for proof.


No Cap

The “no cap” slang can be understood as “no lie” or “for real”, in which a statement isn’t a lie or hyperbole. You can understand it as a synonym for “seriously” as well.


Example: “Your new car is so cool, no cap.”

Meaning: The speaker compliments the person’s new car because it genuinely looks cool.



The terms “throwing shade”, “slipping shade”, or simply “throw shade” are slangs for insult, often nonverbal. In a way, it is used as a way to indirectly and subtly disrespect someone. The term originates from queer culture and you can see its famous presentation by Dorian Corey in Paris is Burning: “Shade is, I don’t have to tell you you’re ugly, but I don’t have to tell you because you know you’re ugly.”


Example: “The students didn’t want to shut up and Mr Jones ended up throwing shades throughout the class.”

Meaning: Mr Jones was annoyed by the noisy class and subtly quipped his students to shut up.



Simple. GOAT is basically an acronym for Greatest of All Time, derived back to the world-class boxer Muhammad Ali. The term is often used in sports conversation, although not limited to it.


Example: “When it comes to superhero movie, Marvel is the GOAT.”

Meaning: Marvel produces the best superhero movie.



As Urban Dictionary put it in 2013, something has to be “over the top” to be considered as “extra”. You can also understand extra as “trying too hard”, excessive, or overly dramatic.


Example: “He tried to propose me on the first date. He’s so extra.”

Meaning: The speaker’s date is overly dramatic for proposing on the first date.


Low Key

The Oprah Magazine described Low Key as “secretive, or “kinda” what you actually want.” You can also use it when something or someone is calm, quiet or keeping a low profile. It is convenient if you want to downplay something or want to be seen casual about something or someone.


Example: “The party was pretty lowkey.”

Meaning: The party was pretty chill.


A Convenient Way to Learn English

Being the best online language course, LingoTalk is a perfect choice for diving into a new lingo and bring yourself into fluency. Not only that, but you’ll also learn how the natives’ talk and their culture with our experienced tutors and exceptional online-based classes. Once you’re finished with your course, you’ll be more than ready to talk like a native, with slang and all!


So, are you ready? Sign yourself up to LingoTalk online course and master a new language with us!

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