What is the difference between Abbreviations and Acronyms?



An abbreviation (from Latin brevi³re → brevis meaning “short”) is a shortened form of a word or phrase used mainly in writing to represent the complete form. It usually has a full-stop at the end.

Examples: Lib. For Library / abbr. for abbreviation / approx. for approximate


An acronym (from Latin acro- meaning “beginning” + -onym meaning “word, name”) is a pronounceable word formed mostly (but not always) from the initial letters of a descriptive name or title.

Examples: radar = radio detecting and ranging / ASAP = as soon as possible

The term initialism uses a similar method, but the word is pronounced letter by letter. Example: BBC British Broadcasting Corporation or USA United States of America.

And last but not least, there are symbols and/or units of reference, like min for minute or kg for kilogram.


50 Popular Internet Acronyms


The Language of Internet: the following is a list of some common acronyms that are used on the web, in E-Mails,… . The list is far from being complete, it just contains the abbreviations (new Slang / shorthands), which I consider most useful. And they should help to better understand the meaning of text centered messages. The acronyms / abbreviations are mostly written in upper case.

Usage & Meaning

Not all of these short-hands can be assumed to be understood by the majorities of Internet or E-Mail users. However, there are some exceptions, which are fairly safe to use:


2          4          B         C         I           O         R         U         Y

to / too           for       be       see     eye     owe    are      you     why

The reason is that these abbreviations are based on the pronunciation of their corresponding letter / digit.



Parroquia No. 830, Colonia Del Valle, Delegación Benito Juárez,
C.P. 03100, Ciudad de México.
A una cuadra de Plaza Universidad.



ETS (Educational Testing Service): institución autorizada para la aplicación del examen TOEFL ITP.

SEP: estudios con reconocimiento de validez oficial según acuerdo de la SEP no. 08FT309 del 22-09-08 oficio no. 254.08/3169 de la coordinación de enlace operativo en el D.F., de la Dirección General de Centros de Formación para el Trabajo.

CENNI-SEP: instancia certificadora en los procesos de certificación nacional del nivel de idioma inglés – CENNI-SEP.

STPS: institución autorizada como agente capacitador por la Secretaria del Trabajo y Previsión Social con el no. de registro IBF-080416-Ql2-0013.


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