What Does NMU Stand For?

NMU stands for ‘Nothing Much, You?’ or ‘Not Much, You’. It is a famous internet slang used as an answer to the questions ‘What’s up’ or ‘What you doing’. Internet users often use this internet jargon when texting or using social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.

Punctuation and Grammar for NMU

When you use an internet jargon on a social network like Facebook, or even during text messaging, it does not have any restrictions for punctuations. It is not obligatory for you to write the abbreviation in upper case or lower case. In fact, you don’t even have to add the question mark at the end if you don’t want it. Internet slang is all about how ‘you’ want to write it down. There are no set of rules for punctuation or for grammar on the internet, especially when you are having a conversation in an informal setting of a social network.

No one will judge you for writing ‘U’ for you, instead of using Y. Everyone who is aware of the slang trend on the internet, understand the social styles and would probably reply to your message in the same manner.

When Should You Use NMU?

NMU, has an answer and a question, both in one. When you are talking to someone you know or someone you would want to have a conversation with, you can send NMU to them when they ask you what’s up, or what have you been up to. But in a case where you are talking to someone you don’t want to talk to or want to end the conversation as soon as possible, or don’t want the conversation to even begin, you can’t use NMU there, because it literally stands for ‘Nothing much, you?’, which will be a conversation starter since you are asking the sender a question as well.

And then, of course, there are the formal settings where you should avoid using internet jargons as much as possible. To seem more professional to the employers and the clients, it is important to maintain a professional outlook. Using slang like NMU with a client or even a boss might be interpreted as something very unprofessional, which might directly affect your career.

Other Internet Jargons Like NMU?

While NMU comprises of a question and an answer within one abbreviation, you can use another similar internet slang, which does not have a question attached to it, that is, NM. NM stands for ‘Nothing Much’, which is the ‘answering’ part of NMU. If you want to be very direct with someone and keep the conversation limited, or simply just don’t want to write much even to a friend, you can use NM. For Example, “H: I am so tired! B: What did you do? H: NM, just washed the dishes.”

You can always attach a phrase along with the internet slang to make more sense out of your answer for NMU as well as NM. Let’s take a look at a few examples for using NMU now.

Examples for Using NMU

Example 1

Y: HI! Whatchu doing?
Z: NMU?
Y: NM either.

Keeping the conversation short and nice.

Example 2

You wake up one morning and see a text message from a friend that you haven’t spoken to in ages. This is how you respond to their message.

Taylor: Good Morning Sara! What’s Up?
Sara: Good morning to you too, Nmu?*confused smiley*
Taylor: same. Why are you confused?
Sara: Umm probably because we haven’t spoken in a year or two, and here you are sending me a morning message.

Example 3

Group Chat:

H: what is your plan for today Alisha?
Alisha: NMU?
H: Going out for lunch, want to join in?
Faryal: Thanks for asking H. Feels good to be a part of this group.

Could Using NMU in a Conversation Give the Wrong Impression?

To be honest, acronyms are used just to save your time in text messaging. You can try this as an experiment too. There might be a slight difference in the time that you take to type ‘Nothing Much, You’ and NMU. And being from the generation of technology, it might not even seem like such a bad thing to use shorthands to talk to people. However, some people, who are not okay with these acronyms, might get the wrong impression. And by wrong, I mean, they might think of you as somebody who is pretty snobbish and who probably is not interested in talking to them. But that is not the case, well not always.

To avoid such situations, where the other person might misunderstand you by the NMU response you gave them, you can pair the slang with a phrase. So that the person you are replying to doesn’t feel like you are trying to make the conversation short with them or are trying to be super rude to them.

Habiba Rehman
Major love for reading, but writing is what keeps me going. Dream to publish my own novels someday.