No, NBD isn’t the name of a new boyband. It’s a popular internet acronym that you should add to your vocabulary. Keep reading to find out what it means and how you can use it effectively in your communications.
No Big Deal
NBD stands for “no big deal.” When used to respond to another message, it’s a phrase used to downplay the importance or burden of favors or gifts. For example, if someone thanks you for helping them fix their car, you might text back, “It’s nbd,” in response. You can also use it to seem more humble about a remarkable accomplishment. For example, you might say, “I just got an A+ on my calculus homework, nbd.” This practice is known as “humblebragging.” This acronym is often written in the lowercase “nbd” instead of the uppercase.
NBD shares many similarities with the acronym NP, which stands for “no problem.” Both are common responses to someone thanking you, and both can replace phrases such as “You’re welcome.” It also has some similarities with DW, which stands for “don’t worry.” All three are commonly spoken phrases in response to someone’s gratitude. However, unlike NP and DW, NBD is often used sarcastically and frequently takes on a completely different meaning.
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The History of NBD
NBD started to become prominent in the early 2000s through message boards and online chat apps like AOL Instant Messenger. The first definition for NBD on the internet slang repository Urban Dictionary is from 2005 and states that it stands for “no big deal.”
While “NBD” started as a way to genuinely respond to someone thanking you, it morphed into something entirely different in the 2010s. As social media websites like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook started to emerge, the practice of “humblebragging” became much more common, especially among teenagers. This led to a spike in the use of “NBD.” The sarcastic definition of the acronym used in personal conversations also rose in popularity, with “NBD” being a common term in chatting apps like WhatsApp and iMessage.
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Originally, NBD was synonymous with “no problem” and acted as a genuine response to someone thanking them. People often used it to downplay the importance or difficulty of a favor you did for someone else. For example, if someone’s thanking you for giving them a ride to the airport, you might say “NBD.”
More often than not, people said “NBD” even if it was a “big deal.” Even if it requires significant time and effort on your part, you might say NBD to assuage the other person’s concerns or so they don’t feel indebted to you.
Sarcasm and Humblebrags
On the opposite side of the coin, using NBD might be a way to brag about something. People will often add NBD when they want to “humblebrag” about something. For example, someone might post, “I just got a shiny new ride, nbd,” accompanied by pictures of their new car. However, most people on the internet can easily see through this attempt to seem humble.
You can also use NBD sarcastically in two different ways. The first is when you’re explicitly trying to get someone to praise or thank you. If you just did a favor for someone, you might tell them about how difficult the favor was, accompanied by NBD. For example, you’d text, “I only had to get up at 6 am to drive you to the airport, but nbd.” This is a way of nudging someone to show gratitude towards you.
The other way to use NBD sarcastically is by “humblebragging” something jokingly. For example, on social media, you might post the same message: “I just got a shiny new ride, nbd.” However, instead of pictures of your car, you might post photos of a children’s tricycle you bought for your nephew. This essentially parodies the above post to a comedic effect.
How to Use NBD
To use NBD sincerely, use it as a response when someone thanks you or shows appreciation for your actions. If you want to use it sarcastically, you can add it at the end of a sentence that shows how much of a “big deal” your actions were or use it in a self-deprecating joke. Here are a few examples of NBD in action:
- “It’s nbd, really.”
- “Just got a promotion at work, but nbd.”
- “It only took me 3 hours to drive here, nbd.”
- “NBD, dude, I’m happy to help.”
Do you want to learn about other internet slang terms? Check out our explainers on TBF, TTYL, and IMO, and you’ll be a web speak savant in no time.
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