What Does DL Mean in a Text?

The abbreviation DL is used with the meanings "Deep Learning," "Down Low" and "Download." Here is more information about each of these definitions with examples.

Deep Learning

Deep Learning is a subset of machine learning (ML) that utilizes neural networks with three or more layers. These networks attempt to simulate the behavior of the human brain in order to "learn" from large amounts of data. While a neural network with a single layer can still make approximate predictions, additional hidden layers can help to optimize accuracy.

Deep Learning drives many artificial intelligence (AI) applications and services that improve automation, performing analytical and physical tasks without human intervention. It is used in various domains like image and speech recognition, medical diagnosis, financial forecasting, and more, often outperforming other machine learning techniques.

Check out our comprehensive glossary of AI terms.

Down Low

DL is widely used with the meaning "Down Low" to refer to something conducted in secret or discreetly. DL often (but not always) implies that such behavior or actions involve a degree of deception or illegality.

The phrase "Down Low" can refer to any action or behavior that can be described as secretive or deceptive. However, especially in the African-American community, it is often used to refer to a man that is a closet homosexual or secret bisexual.


DL is also used to mean "Download," which usually refers to the copying of data from one location or device (e.g., a server, PC, cellphone, tablet or website) to another. However, "Download" is also a slang term, widely used (typically by young men and boys) to refer to the act of going to the toilet to defecate.

Image for DL

When I write DL, I mean this:

meaning of DL

DL also means "Down Low."

Summary of Key Points for First Definition of DL

"Deep Learning" is a common definition for DL when talking about artificial intelligence..
2: Quite easy to guess

Definition:Deep Learning
Guessability:guessability level 4

4: Difficult to guess

Typical Users:typical user


Summary of Key Points for Second Definition of DL

"Down Low" is a common definition for DL on Snapchat, WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.
Definition:Down Low
Guessability:guessability level 2
2: Quite easy to guess
Typical Users:typical user

Adults and Teenagers

Summary of Key Points for Third Definition of DL

"Download" is another common definition for DL.
Guessability:guessability level 2
2: Quite easy to guess
Typical Users:typical user

Adults and Teenagers

Examples of DL in Sentences

Here are examples of DL being used in conversations:
  • Gill: I saw Sue with Chris last night.
  • Lynn: They've been dating for a couple of weeks, but they want to keep it on the DL.

  • (Here DL means "Down Low" and implies discretion.)
  • Jo: Tom's so cute. Is he single?
  • Fran: Never seen him with a girl. I think he's into the bros on the DL.

  • (Here DL means "Down Low" and implies that Tom is a closet homosexual.)
  • Ollie: Where's Ken?
  • Matt: He's gone to the can for a DL.

  • (Here DL means "Download," but it has nothing to do with file transfers.)

An Academic Look at DL

DL is classified as an initialism abbreviation, as it is pronounced using its individual letters. Initialisms are different to acronyms, which are spoken like words.

When used with the meaning "To defecate," download is a slang word. Slang refers to words, phrases and uses of language that are regarded as very informal and which are often restricted to a special context or a particular group of users.

Example of DL Used in a Text

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