Acronyms such as “ikr” have been around since language was invented, but are even more prevalent today thanks to the Internet, and mobile devices in particular. While this makes it easier to type faster on the small keyboards of mobile devices, it can also leave people confused as new acronyms come into exitance all the time. The good news is that once you learn these acronyms you can also use them to make typing easier and faster. This being the case, let’s go over the meaning and history of the acronym “ikr.”
What Does IKR Mean?
When it comes to the ikr meaning that most people are familiar with, ikr means “I know, right?” In most cases, “ikr” is used to represent this and in doing so serve as an indicator of agreement with the person they’re communicating with.
There is one discrepancy though, and that is the fact that in rare cases “ikr” can actually be used sarcastically. This can muddy the meaning a bit since detecting sarcasm is difficult to detect online. Further complicating things is the fact that sometimes the acronym can be used derisively, showing frustration, contempt, or annoyance.
One way to make the true meaning of “ikr” known to those you’re communicating with is with emojis. For example, if you’re using “ikr” as a means to communicate your annoyance, you could use an eye-rolling emoji. On the other hand, if you just want to communicate your agreeance with someone, you could use the thumbs-up emoji.
Of course, using emojis isn’t always practical or professional, so in those cases, you may want to skip the acronym if you feel that it won’t clearly communicate what you need it to. That said, situations in which using abbreviations is acceptable usually mean that using emojis is acceptable as well.
When Did IKR Start Being Used?
The origin of using “ikr” to abbreviate “I know, right?” can be traced back as far as the early 1900s. However, modern usage of the acronym became common in the early 2000s as the Internet became more widespread. Even so, it can be assumed that the abbreviation was being used in electronic computing much earlier, possibly even as far back as the emergence of the first computers themselves.
Unfortunately, specific historical examples of the first uses of this acronym are nearly impossible to narrow down. However, it is known that in the Internet age the first uses of “ikr” were likely in the chat apps and message boards of the mid-90s. Even so, it wouldn’t be surprising if the acronym was used among developers and coders before the Internet was made into households.
Other Meanings of IKR
For the most part, “ikr” has always stood for “I know, right?” as far as the English language is concerned. Other iterations of the abbreviation would likely be limited to a person’s initials or the initials of a business entity. In other languages that use the Latin alphabet, such as Spanish or French, there could be other meanings to the acronym.
One thing to keep in mind is that IKR can be misread or mistyped in many cases, such as spelling it “irk,” or “lrk.” Depending on the specific font/typeface being used, this can cause quite a bit of confusion with other acronyms. For example, if mistaken for “lrk,” the meaning could be misunderstood as “Linux Root Kit,” or “Long Range Kinematic.” As with any acronym, there is really no room for error or the meaning will be lost or misunderstood in almost every situation.
When to Use IKR
Now that you have a good understanding of the ikr meaning, let’s go over how and when to use it. Since this is a term of an agreement it may seem natural to just use it anytime you agree with someone. However, it should be noted that “I know, right?” is a stronger form of agreement than just “I know.” Even so, “I know, right?” can also come across as more friendly than just saying “I know.” which may sound abrasive or even rude.
Matters are complicated by the fact that “I know, right?” can also seem rude if used in a mocking way. As discussed earlier, using an emoji can help to identify your intention when using this acronym.
Taking all of that into consideration, the best time to use “ikr” is when you want to save time typing, and you know for sure that the person you’re communicating with will know what you mean. On the other hand, if you feel that the person you’re communicating with won’t get your meaning, then using something more generic like “yeah” or “okay” and skipping the acronym altogether might be a good idea.
Examples of Scenarios Using IKR
Now let’s take a look at a few scenarios that showcase how to use “ikr” online to abbreviate “I know, right?” so that you’ll have a better understanding of how it works in practice.
John: Bob is such a jerk. I wish he would shut up about his new boat.
Awesomemonkey8754: Can u believe wut Jen wore 2 the prom? I’m sooooo jelous lol!
sparkleGirlxoxoxo: also, you missplled jealous lol
Example 3 (How not to use it)
ComicNerd90210: That movie was a dumpster fire!
ComicNerd90210: r u serious thot u liked it?
xXxDarthinvaderxXx: lol yeah
As you can see, using “ikr” to abbreviate “I know, right?” can be a quick and simple way to communicated your agreement with someone in a variety of situations. However, if used incorrectly, it can lead to confusion and make it seem like you agree with someone in a situation in which you don’t. Use emojis to clarify what you mean when appropriate, and consider not using it if you think that it would only cause confusion. Follow these guidelines, and using “ikr” will quickly become second nature to you.