That's according to a new list entitled " Top 50 Text Acronyms Parents Should Know," which is is making its way around the Internet and has caught the eye of some local TV news reporters.
The problem is... Many people who see the list wind up howling with laughter, since many of the terms are completely unknown to most people, teenaged or otherwise.
"Some of these are absolutely hilarious," writes "FirstCuts," who posted the link to the online aggregator site Digg. "Honestly, it's probably one of the dumbest things I've ever seen in local network news, and that's saying something."
"I honestly have to say I have never seen most of these terms," says Sascha Segan of PC Magazine. "It looks like a lot of them come from online sex chat rooms, and not just any chat rooms, but sadomasochistic ones."
That explains the, um, very specific terms on the list, such as "NIFOC," or "Nude In Front Of The Computer," and "ILF/MD," which apparently means "I Love Female/Male Dominance."
"I don't know most of this stuff," says Jason Parks, a 21-year-old junior at Arizona State University. "My friends and I just looked at it, and we were cracking up."
"There are spikes in the amount of usage for each acronym, and regional variations," she adds. "Something that's being used on the West Coast, for example, won't be in the East, and the South may use terms that aren't common in the Pacific Northwest. And the Midwest is just a hotbed of this sex chat-room stuff."
"It's a good overview of what parents ought to be aware of, even if their kids aren't going to these weird chat rooms, because kids pick them up anyway," Jansen explains "It's like when I was young and my friends and I looked up dirty words in the dictionary."
"I'm sure someone has used each of the terms somewhere, sometime," says Segan. "But you're not going to get many teens texting each other that they love female/male dominance."
Some of the terms are accurate, Segan says -- chiefly the ones having to do with the presence of parents in the room, or "parent or mom over shoulder."
"'ASL' for age/sex/location -- that's been used since I was on chat rooms as a kid," he adds. "'420' has referred to marijuana for decades. And '1337' for 'elite' -- that's old-fashioned geekspeak, and when I mention it to kids these days, they have no idea what I mean."
"That's the one parents should be looking at," he says. "If parents don't know those, it doesn't mean they're old -- it just means they're not tuned into Internet culture."
"Most kids are going to have terms that only they and their small group of friends understand," says Segan.