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“Just so you know”
JSYK stands for “just so you know”. It is used to share a piece of information or comment with someone who has not asked for it. It can be used to start a conversation, or it can appear in the middle of a conversation with someone. It bears many similarities to the popular FYI or ‘for information’.
While the initialism can be written in both capital “JSYK” and lowercase “jsyk”, the lowercase version is much more popular online in messaging and social media.
One thing to note is that sharing something with “JSYK” could be considered rude depending on what you say and its context. While you may find it helpful, giving sudden criticism by the person you are talking to can be considered unfounded.
The origin of JSYK
JSYK can be traced back to the earliest days of message boards and Internet chat in the 1990s and 2000s. The first definition of the acronym on Urban Dictionary dates back to 2005 and humorously calls it a ‘lazy phrase on the Internet that is meant to save keystrokes’. Given the number of terms that have been shortened over the period, this interpretation seems very likely.
The acronym has been widely used over the past decade in conjunction with the adoption of direct messaging apps such as WhatsApp, Viber, and Apple iMessage. JSYK is a popular term often used among friends, family and acquaintances. However, in real life conversations, the full phrase “so you know” is more common.
Providing unsolicited information
JSYK is usually used to give someone information that they have not explicitly asked for, but that you think would be helpful to know. For example, if someone is about to drive off to get food in town, it might be helpful to say, “JSYK, the traffic is very busy tonight.” While they don’t need knowing that, the information will help them determine their route and options.
Sometimes JSYK can initiate a conversation itself. If you are using the acronym to start a cold post, follow it immediately with the important information you want to share.
Another use of JSYK is to share details about your life with someone else. If you recently got promoted, you can message them “JSYK, I just got promoted.” Responses to this use of the acronym vary. This can be an annoying use of the acronym for the other user as they may or may not care what you share.
FYI vs JSYK
JSYK bears a lot of resemblance to another, more famous acronym, FYI, meaning ‘for information’. These abbreviations are intended to give someone information that you think they need, but have not necessarily asked for.
The main difference between the two is that FYI tends to be more professional while JSYK tends to be more casual and personal. FYI is often used in professional and journalistic settings and often precedes company emails, reports or fun facts. It has also been a part of the English language for over 100 years and is often spoken out loud in the acronym form.
On the other hand, JSYK is more common in casual conversations between friends and acquaintances who share personal tidbits about themselves or updates about their lives. The acronym is rarely spoken out loud compared to the full sentence “just so you know,” making it a more exclusive term to the Internet.
How to use JSYK
When you text or message someone, you can use JSYK to share all kinds of information with other people. Examples include helpful tips, recent updates on mutual friends, and important current events.
Here are a few ways to use JSYK:
- “Jsyk, I think we are out of milk.”
- “It’s raining outside, jsyk.”
- “JSYK, I think Julien will propose next month.”
- “Paprika should be really good for this recipe, jysk.”
If you want to learn more about other online slang terms, check out our articles on TBH, BRB and TIL. Before you know it, you’ll be texting like a digital native.
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