What Does SN Mean in a Text?

SN has three meanings when used as slang in a social-media setting. It can mean "Say Nothing," "Sike Nah," or "Screen Name." Below is more information about each of these definitions with examples of use.

Say Nothing

The abbreviation SN is widely used in text messaging with the meaning "Say Nothing." In this context, it is most commonly an order to keep quiet, but it can be an acknowledgement of thanks (similar to "Don't mention it" or the Spanish de nada). For example:
  • Ali: I hear Les is going to be promoted on Friday.
  • Jo: SN. It's a secret.
  • (Here, SN is an order to keep quiet.)
  • Lee: Thanks very much for your help with everything.
  • Fran: SN. Glad to be of service.
  • (Here, SN is an acknowledgement of thanks.)

Sike Nah

SN is also an abbreviation of the phrase "Sike Nah", which indicates that something that has just been typed was intended as a joke or a prank on the recipient. In this context, SN is similar in meaning to phrases such as "Fooled you!" and "Just kidding!" For example:
  • Joe: On reflection, I've decided you're right. Let's call another election.
  • Donald: That's good. It's great. It's the best way forward for everyone.
  • Joe: SN! Please vacate my house now.

Video Summarizing SIKE (and therefore "SN")

Here's a short video explaining how SIKE is used:
"SIKE" is the main term, but it is often seen as PSYCH, SIKE-NAH, PSYNAH, or just SN.

Screen Name

A "Screen Name" is the name someone chooses for an online profile or character. It is particularly common on Snapchat, but it features in many games and social-media apps. A SN can be based on an real or fictional name, animals, objects, concepts, or just a random string of characters. For example:
  • Toni: What's your name?
  • Jess: Jess Long.
  • Toni: I'll look you up. What's your SN?
  • Jess: Jess.Long.
  • Toni: Really?
  • Jess: Why complicate things? You?
  • Toni: 235813Fib
  • Jess: Your SN is the Fibonacci sequence? You are such a geek!

Image for SN

When I write SN, I mean this:

meaning of SN

SN also means "Say Nothing" and "Screen Name."

Summary of Key Points

First Definition of SN

"Say Nothing" is a common definition for SN on Snapchat, WhatsApp, Facebook, and (X) Twitter.
Definition:Say Nothing
Guessability:guessability level 4

4: Difficult to guess unless the context makes it obvious.

Typical Users:typical user

Adults and Teenagers

Second Definition of SN

"Sike Nah" is another definition for SN.
Definition:Sike Nah
Guessability:guessability level 2
2: Quite easy to guess (This term always comes with some context and is used among senders and recipients who tend to use "sike nah.")
Typical Users:typical user

Adults and Teenagers

Third Definition for SN

SN also means "Screen Name." It is especially common Snapchat.
Definition:Screen Name
Guessability:guessability level 2
2: Quite easy to guess
Typical Users:typical user

Adults and Teenagers

An Academic Look at SN

Whether used with the meaning "Sike Nah" or "Screen Name," SN is classified as an initialism abbreviation because it is pronounced using its individual letters (i.e., "Ess Enn"). Initialisms are different to acronyms, which are spoken like words.

Example of SN Used in a Text

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This page is maintained by the Cyber Definitions Editorial Team.

Wider Use of SN

Outside social-media, SN can have the following meanings:
Snthe periodic symbol for tin
Serial Numbera unique number used to track manufacturing
Social Networkingusing social contacts to expand or develop opportunities
Steric Numbera technical term used in chemistry for the total number of atoms directly bonded to a central metal atom and the number of lone pairs attached

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