FTW Meaning: Why Do My Kids Keep Saying This?

Words by
Jackie Baucom

MAR 12, 2024

FTW Meaning: Why Do My Kids Keep Saying This?

In the ever-evolving world of internet slang, few phrases pack as much punch as FTW. But here’s the kicker: it’s not just about winning anymore.

FTW now toggles between rallying cries for triumph (“for the win”) and rebellious shouts against the status quo (“f**k the world”).

What Does FTW Mean? For the Win

Originating from both sports and gaming culture, FTW stands for “for the win.” The exact origin is unclear but it gained popularity as a rallying cry among gamers, athletes, and sportscasters. It typically represents a call to action, an expression of determination to achieve excellence, or to highlight a pivotal moment that will determine victory or defeat.

Over time, “for the win” expanded to become a versatile phrase in everyday conversations. It expresses enthusiasm, and encourages individuals to strive for greatness.

What Does FTW Stand for? F**k the World

FTW can also be used to mean “f**k the world,” and carries a much darker and rebellious connotation than the original “for the win.” It serves as a defiant rejection of societal norms and authority. It’s often used as an expression of anger or frustration.

Same Meaning, Different Words

FTW letters with kids faces

Both sentiments expressed in FTW can be communicated with other words. 

  • Victory is ours
  • In it to win it
  • Leading the charge
  • Let’s go!
  • Ignore the world
  • Rebel against society
  • Bite me
  • Drop dead

Overheard on Social Media

Here are some ways kids are using FTW online to express their feelings:

“Just aced my final exam. Study group FTW!”

“Sneakers over heels FTW on a long day of city walking.”

“Overtime FTW”

“Heading on a solo road trip and leaving everything behind. FTW.”

“Woke up feeling like it’s me against everyone today. It’s a FTW kind of mood.”

“FTW and everyone’s opinions. I’m just trying to live.”

While the two interpretations of FTW may seem opposites, they both reflect aspects of human nature — the drive for success and the impulse to rebel. FTW embodies the complexity of human emotions and the multifaceted nature of language. FTW is a great reminder of the power of language to convey different perspectives and sentiments in just three letters. 

What do you think?

Did you know about these two meanings? Do you know any others? Let us know in the comments below.

For more slang terms and internet trends, check out our blog for more articles.

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