What Does BRT Mean?

How to understand and use this internet abbreviation

Woman standing in front of house checking watch as she texts BRT on her phone
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If you've ever seen the letters BRT in a text message or chat room, the internet acronym stands for "be right there." If someone types BRT in a text conversation, they're politely saying they're hurrying and will be there shortly. In a chat room, online discussion forum, or online game, BRT tells someone to wait patiently while you travel to meet them.

Like most internet jargon, the expression is not suitable for initial business dealings. BRT is best used in personal texting, email, online chatting, or when a business acquaintance has become a friend.

Both uppercase and lowercase versions of BRT (brt) mean the same thing and are perfectly acceptable.

When texting or communicating online, be careful not to type entire sentences in uppercase, as this conveys shouting and is considered rude.

Examples of BRT Usage

Example 1:

  •  (User 1) Hurry! We're almost at the front of the line!
  •  (User 2): BRT, parking now

Example 2

  • (User 1) Shelby, where are you? We're here at the back of the restaurant by the window, and we're almost done with the appetizers!
  • (User 2) BRT! I'm only 5 blocks away.

Example 3

  • (User 1) Paul, we're waiting here with the boss. Are you back at your keyboard?
  • (User 2) Just finishing phone call now, brt!

Origins of the Modern BRT Expression

While its origins are unclear, BRT is a very common internet expression that likely arose naturally as an abbreviation. The BRT expression, like LOL, LMAO, and many other online expressions and web lingo, is part of online conversation culture.

Expressions Similar to BRT

  • BBIAB: (Be Back in a Bit)
  • TTYL: (Talk to You Later)
  • CU: (See You!)
  • CUL8R: (See You Later!)
  • BRB: (Be Right Back)
  • AFK (Away From Keyboard)

Capitalizing and Punctuating Web and Text Abbreviations

Capitalization is a non-concern when using text abbreviations and chat jargon. Use all uppercase (BRT) or all lowercase (brt) letters and the meaning is identical.

Proper punctuation is similarly a non-concern with most text message abbreviations. For example, the abbreviation for "too long, didn't read" can be TL;DR or TLDR. Both are acceptable.

Never use periods (dots) between your acronym letters; it would defeat the purpose of being a shortcut. For example, ROFL would never be spelled R.O.F.L., and BRT would never be B.R.T. 

Recommended Etiquette for Web and Text Jargon 

When tempted to use jargon in messages, evaluate who your audience is, if the context is informal or professional, and then use good judgment. If you know someone well and it is a personal and informal communication, then absolutely use abbreviations. On the flip side, if you are just starting a friendship or professional relationship, avoid abbreviations until you've developed a relationship rapport.

If messaging in a professional context with someone at work, or with a customer or vendor outside your company, avoid abbreviations altogether. Spelling out full words shows professionalism and courtesy. It is much smarter to err on the side of being too professional at first, and then relax your communication over time organically.