HTH might seem like it stands for many things, but it’s mostly used to lend a helping hand online. Here’s what HTH means, the history of the term, and how you can use it.
“Hope This Helps” and “Happy to Help”
HTH stands for either “Hope this helps” or “Happy to help.” It’s often used on the internet to either provide assistance or respond to someone thanking you for your assistance. How do you tell which is which? Here are two examples of HTH in action:
- “Here’s a Dropbox folder with all my notes from last semester. HTH.”
- “Sure, HTH, I hope you find those notes useful.”
In the first sentence, HTH means “Hope this helps,” as the sender hopes that the recipient finds the notes useful. In the second sentence, HTH means “Happy to help,” which is an alternative way of saying “You’re welcome.” This use case is similar to other internet acronyms used to respond to thanks, such as “NP,” or “No problem.”
HTH is often written in uppercase so as not to be confused with other similar acronyms. You might see it come up all over the internet, particularly in conversations with techy people.
A History of HTH
HTH can be traced back to the early days of the World Wide Web. Like other internet abbreviations, it was used in IRC chatrooms and internet forums to communicate faster and accommodate more words on the screen. HTH was a way for people to help each other out, especially if they had technical issues with their computers.
The first definition for HTH on Urban Dictionary dates back to November of 2002 and reads ‘”Hope that helps” or “Happy to help.”‘ Since then, it has become common across the internet and in personal conversations between people.
Friendly (and Not-So-Friendly) Advice
HTH is generally a wholesome and friendly slang term. On websites like Reddit or message boards, you’ll often find people posting about important resources, providing homework help, or giving good advice, accompanied by HTH or “Hope this helps.” This is especially true for websites like Stack Overflow, a Q&A website widely used by developers and programmers.
However, HTH can also be sarcastic. Let’s say that you attempt to help fix a technical problem with someone’s computer but can’t resolve the issue. If the person points out that it didn’t work, you might say HTH or “Happy to help” as a passive-aggressive response. The same goes for saying “Hope this helps” with an ultimately pointless solution, such as asking someone to restart their computer after their monitor completely dies.
Other HTH Definitions
There are quite a few alternative definitions of HTH or other similar acronyms. Here are a few alternative meanings to this acronym that you should watch out for.
An alternative meaning for HTH is “How the hell,” which is derived from WTH or “What the hell.” This is normally used to express disbelief in something. This definition is much less commonly used than “Hope this helps,” but it can still appear online.
Besides that, there’s also “H2H,” which looks and sounds quite similar to HTH. This acronym can mean various things, which can be found on different parts of the internet. Here are just a few:
- Head-to-head: This is a type of matchup frequently seen in sports, where two teams or two players are compared directly, often before an actual competition.
- Heart-to-heart: This refers to an intimate conversation between two people.
- Hand-to-hand: This is a style of combat that involves no weapons and can be found in many video games and movies.
- Human-to-human: This is marketing jargon that refers to the use of human interactions to market to an audience.
To identify which H2H definition is being used in any given sentence, pay attention to the context of the post and the website it’s on. If you’re on a sports website, it likely means “head-to-head.” If you’re on a gaming news account, it likely means “hand-to-hand.”
How to Use HTH
Use HTH in place of where you’d say “Hope this helps” or “Happy to help.” Remember that you can use it either when you send something that might be helpful or as a response to someone thanking you.
Here are a few ways to use HTH:
- “Here are a few links to resources that I used to learn web development. HTH!”
- “They regularly have great promotional deals in August, so if you wait a week, you might save some money. HTH!”
- “Sure, it’s no big deal. HTH!”
- “I’m always HTH someone in need.”