K-Pop Fans Mistake New Gen-Z Slang For Korean Word

Did you think is was Korean or an acronym?

K-Pop fans mistook a popular internet acronym for a Korean word.

BTS’s Jungkook | BTS/VLIVE

You might have seen netizens increasingly use what appears to be a word recently. It’s “ijbol.”

It’s actually an acronym for the phrase, “I just burst out laughing.” It’s the latest Gen-Z internet slang. While the phrase originated in 2009, the acronym appeared in 2011. It never became frequently used like similar acronyms “lol,” “lmao,” or “rofl” until now, over a decade later.

| Google
| Urban Dictionary

Last year, “ijbol” became more frequently used by netizens. Now, it’s more popular than ever as it’s become a viral trend to post a video or photo of someone bursting out laughing and include “ijbol” in the caption.

Still, many didn’t know what “ijbol” meant. The K-Pop fan community, especially, initially thought it was a Korean word, not an acronym! Several netizens’ confessions of this have gone viral, proving it’s a universal experience.

One reason why so many K-Pop fans might have mistaken “ijbol” for a Korean word is that some English-speaking K-content fans spell out Korean words phonetically. For example, the exclamation, “제발,” which means “For God’s sake,” is often written as “jebal.” Besides, since most write “ijbol” in lowercase rather than all caps “IJBOL,” it looks more like part of a sentence than an acronym at first glance.

So, netizens even assumed “ijbol” was some sort of exclamation or insult in Korean. But it’s just an innocent acronym to express laughter online.

Did you know what “ijbol” meant?

Source: Mashable

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