I was going to node this under TLA until I dug around a bit and found this term 'netism', which is better. I think the difference between a good and a bad netism, and likewise with an emoticon, is that a good one should add and qualify content without having to be understood to get the basic idea. For example, if you see

  • QLPZ the Cray 4 Electronoggin is a crock of poo \;*=
you should be able to read this, and get the gist of the other person's idea, by reading it without the unknown gubbins, viz
  • The Cray 4 Electronoggin is a crock of poo
Most of the familiar netisms don't seriously subvert the essence, they just impart some hesitation or note of hearsay or mental distancing. You can do this with
  • IMHO the Cray 4 Electronoggin is a crock of poo ;-)
  • FWIW the Cray 4 Electronoggin is a crock of poo :-(
  • IIRC the Cray 4 Electronoggin is a crock of poo 8)
  • AFAIK the Cray 4 Electronoggin is a crock of poo :-p

To ensure your netism are transparent like that seems to me a nice piece of netiquette, and absolves you of using jargon. (In contrast, I particularly dislike the incomprehensible YMMV.)

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