Elise Moreau is a digital marketer, web content writer and copywriter. She has covered web trends for Lifewire and previously About. What's confusing about this particular acronym is that the words "are" and "you" aren't represented by their first letters.
Instead, the acronym uses the internet slang terms "R" and "U," which sound exactly like their corresponding words "are" and "you. The acronym may or may not be accompanied by a question mark after it, but it always represents a question regardless of punctuation use. For strangers who meet online for the first time via message boardsdating sitessocial networks or other online communities, opening with HRU can really help get the ball rolling with the conversation.
Friends, colleagues, and other people you know in person may also use it to help get a conversation started or just to check in with you. Example 2 Friend 1: "Sorry I didn't text all week, been super busy. Friend 2 checks in with Friend 1 by using HRU after not hearing from them all week.
Chances are that even some of the most web savvy, smartphone-addicted people won't know what it means. This slang phrase is much easier to read and decode. Practically everyone who's plugged into modern technology is aware that the use of R means "are" and U means "you," so you're more likely to get a better response.
When and When Not to Use HRU Unlike many other slang acronyms out there, HRU is a friendly and polite acronym—but that doesn't necessarily mean you can use it just anywhere or with anyone. Here are a few general guidelines.
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Use HRU when: You're texting or chatting with somebody else who frequently uses acronyms. If you're connecting with someone new on a dating sitein a chat room or anywhere else online, your use of HRU could help to set the casual tone of the conversation.
You're genuinely interested in knowing more about the other person.
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Don't fall into this trap if you want to make it a good conversation. Don't Use HRU when: You're having a casual conversation with somebody who always uses proper spelling and grammar.
Even if it's casual, it's probably a good idea to show your respect for the other person by sticking to proper spelling and grammar if that's what they using in the conversation. You're having a professional conversation with someone. They may not be impressed. You feel obligated to ask it. You may be better off skipping the use of HRU in a conversation altogether.
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