What Does “TBH” Mean, and How Do You Use It?

The letters "TBH" in a big, comic-styled font
acidmit/Shutterstock.com

You’ve more than likely noticed other folks throwing across the word “TBH,” however what does it imply? This expression has been round for fairly some time, however its that means has modified slightly through the years.

“To Be Fair” or “To Be Heard”

In maximum scenarios, TBH is used as an instantaneous abbreviation for “to be fair.” It’s an initialism that received traction within the past due 90s or early 2000s, and its origins are carefully related to web boards, web relay chat (IRC), and text-message tradition.

TBH is normally positioned firstly or the tip of a sentence to put across a sense of frankness. If anyone desires to be candid about an opinion, they may say “TBH, I hate video video games.” After all, TBH can be used as a device for bluntness, flattery, or insult. You need to raise anyone up with a remark like “TBH, you’re a robust and authentic individual” or carry them down with “TBH, I hate your style in motion pictures.”

Turns out lovely easy, proper? Smartly, TBH lives a secret existence amongst youngsters. Some children perceive TBH as an abbreviation for “to be heard”—a catchall time period for social interactions which can be confessional in nature.

There’s even a style of social media posts referred to as “TBH posts” the place children ask for his or her blunt critiques of one another. Youngsters may say “like this put up for a TBH,” or “TBH for TBH” with the purpose of handing out (or receiving) blunt critiques. Those critiques are normally intended to be complimentary or funny, however they may be able to even be deliberately hurtful or abusive (those are youngsters we’re speaking about, in the end).

From TBH and Again Once more

As we discussed previous, TBH (to be fair) was a commonplace word throughout the past due 90s or early 2000s. It used to be more than likely utilized in IRC or SMS conversations to put across a way of honesty or candor prior to spreading onto message forums and internet sites. The primary City Dictionary access for TBH used to be added in 2003, and (in line with Google Developments) the phrase didn’t hit the large time till 2011.

The teenage definition of TBH (to be heard) has a in a similar fashion imprecise historical past. It’s secure to suppose the word (together with words like “TBH for TBH”) started cropping up on internet sites like Fb and Tumblr round 2010. No less than, that’s when question-answer websites like ask.fm have been fashionable.

A woman holds up a flip phone and an iPhone. She looks toward the flip phone---toward a long departed era...
metamorworks/Shutterstock.com

Anyway, the opposite definition of TBH flew below the radar till 2015 or 2016, when morning information presentations and publications like Industry Insider reported on it as a possible type of bullying. Fb will have to have spotted the fad, as the corporate bought a question-answer app referred to as TBH in 2017. The app, which failed, used to be focused towards youngsters and adopted a peculiar roughly quiz structure.

Unfortunately, the teenage definition of TBH is recently at the approach out. It has misplaced traction on Google Developments, it hasn’t gave the impression in any Industry magazines, and Instagram’s Tale Stickers have successfully streamlined the method of asking your pals for a TBH.

In some way, I’m for my part bummed we’re ditching “to be heard.” I feel it’s a fascinating word that issues out how issues which can be “actual” or “candid” are regularly used as a foreign money for consideration on-line. Oh smartly, a minimum of “to be fair” in reality is sensible.

Methods to Use TBH

TBH is an instantaneous abbreviation for the word “to be fair.” In maximum scenarios, you’ll be able to simply use the phrase “TBH” anywhere you may in reality say “to be fair” in a sentence.

Simply needless to say the general public use TBH firstly or finish of a sentence. It’s every so often used in the midst of a sentence, however best as a preposition for an impartial clause. You gained’t see anyone pronouncing “I’m attempting TBH with you!” That’s simply an eyesore and a criminal offense in opposition to the web.

A man stares at his computer and tries his best to be honest.
Fizkes/Shutterstock.com

Listed below are a couple of fast examples of the best way to use TBH correctly:

  • TBH, I may by no means get in the back of the entire Iron Guy factor.
  • TBH, you’re my highest good friend. I like to textual content you, bro.
  • It’s now not a large deal, TBH.
  • I do know I’m all the time speaking about my muscle tissue, however I’m in reality lovely vulnerable, TBH.
  • I’m lovely hungry, however TBH, I’m all the time lovely hungry.

As for the “to be heard” definition, it’s more than likely now not price committing to reminiscence. The fashion is on its approach out, and it’s most commonly utilized by youngsters.


Talking of traits which can be on their approach out, now’s a good time to atone for every other fascinating items of well timed web tradition, like leetspeak, Finstagrams, and the phrase YEET. TBH, it’s great to understand the place those items of tradition got here from, although you don’t plan to make use of them on your on a regular basis existence.

setTimeout(serve as()
!serve as(f,b,e,v,n,t,s)
(window, file,’script’,
‘https://attach.fb.web/en_US/fbevents.js’);
fbq(‘init’, ‘335401813750447’);
fbq(‘observe’, ‘PageView’);
,3000);

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *