FW Is a New Acronym for Many on TikTok, but Its Meaning Is Pretty Simple

FW is the latest acronym to pop up on TikTok, and it stands for "f--k with." Let's see how people use it.

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Apr. 22 2024, Published 10:51 a.m. ET

A hand holding a phone with the TikTok logo.
Source: Getty Images

Language is constantly evolving and changing, and the internet is a big reason why some of those evolutions happen. TikTok, in particular, has created new slang terms and acronyms, some of which look like total gibberish if you aren't already familiar with them.

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Recently, some TikTok users have noticed that the acronym FW has become more common on the platform, but many don't understand exactly what the term means. Here's what we know about the acronym and why it's become so popular on TikTok.

A zoomed in TikTok logo on a phone.
Source: Getty Images
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What does FW mean on TikTok?

FW is an acronym that stands for "f--k with," and it's typically used when someone is describing something that they intentionally avoid. Someone might say that they "don't FW cats," meaning that they are more of a dog person, or at the very least they aren't into cats. A person might also say that they "FW this song," meaning that they dig it or are into it.

Basically, the phrase just means that the person might intentionally avoid something specific.

TikTok is known in large part for its incredibly powerful algorithm, which gives users videos that are custom-recommended for their specific tastes. That algorithm is mostly a mystery to users of the platform, but many suspect that the platform won't usually recommend content that features profanity because that content violates its terms of service.

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Given that TikTok caters in part to a pretty large audience, it wants to make sure that the videos that become popular on the platform are friendly for people of all ages. So, TikTok users have come up with ways of using profanity without actually using it, and FW is a prominent example of that. Of course, FW is also shorter than "f--k with," so some people also use it save time or character space.

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FW also has a couple of other meanings.

Although the most common meaning of FW on TikTok refers to "f--k with," there are also a few other potential meanings for the phrase. The most common is "forward," but that is typically used only in email. There are also phrases like "future wife" or "flash warning" that may apply to the acronym depending on the context in which it's being used.

Most of the time, "f--k with" is the right choice though. If that definition doesn't make sense, you might want to try one of the others to see if they're a closer fit. As is often the case with things on TikTok, context matters a great deal.

FW is far from the first new acronym to pop up on TikTok and it won't be the last. Not all of these terms become popular outside of the platform, but some of them eventually do. When people start saying FW out loud instead of spelling out exactly what they mean, then you'll know that language is really evolving around you.

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