What Does BTOBS Mean in a Text?

homesearch bBTOBS

The Quick Answer

BTOBS means "Be There Or Be Square."

More Observations...

The abbreviation BTOBS is commonly associated with an event and implies that anyone who's cool and hip will be there. If you don't go, people will think you're a "nerd" or a "dork," i.e., a "square." The term "square" was coined in the 1950s to mean someone, usually older, who was out of touch, unfashionable, and conservative.

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When I write BTOBS, I mean this:

meaning of BTOBS

BTOBS means "Be There Or Be Square."

Summary of Key Points

"Be There Or Be Square" is, by far, the most common meaning for BTOBS when it is used in a text. (Bear in mind that it could have another meaning if used in a different context.)
Definition:Be There Or Be Square
Guessability:guessability level 4
4: Difficult to guess
Typical Users:typical user

Adults and Teenagers

Examples of BTOBS in Sentences

Here are examples of BTOBS in conversations:
  • Sally: I don't know whether I can be bothered to go to the party tonight.
  • Richard: What? Everyone's going. BTOBS.
  • Tina: I've been invited to the opening night of a new club.
  • Joel: BTOBS. I heard it's an 'A'-list crowd.

An Academic Look at BTOBS

BTOBS is an initialism abbreviation. Technically, this means it is pronounced using its individual letters (i.e., Bee Tee Oh Bee Ess), but as this is harder to say than "Be there or be square," it is not often uttered using its letters. In other words, the abbreviation BTOBS is for efficiency in writing and not efficiency in speech.

What Did We Say before Texting and Social Media?

Before the digital era, people just said the term "Be There are Be Square" in full instead of BTOBS.

Example of BTOBS Used in a Text

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