The Meaning of AITA: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of AITA? This article will provide you with all of the knowledge you need on the abbreviation AITA, including its definition, usage, conversation examples, and more!

Copywriting, simplified.

Introducing the end of writer’s block. With CopyAI’s automated creativity tools, you can generate marketing copy in seconds.

What does the acronym AITA stand for?

According to Wired, the term AITA is short for “Am I the Asshole?” This is used in reference to the subreddit, or subforum, of the message board site Reddit. The subreddit is entitled r/AmItheAsshole, and it is a place that people can post about their situations and ask if they are being a jerk in the situation or if the other person is being unreasonable. This is an extremely popular subreddit because of the community it brings. The people who post on the forum are asking to crowdsource opinions on their struggle, and people love to reply. For posters, this is a way to settle an argument, and for commenters, it’s a way to provide judgement and find community.

This subreddit has over 1 million subscribers and has been posted about by many celebrities referring to the memes in the subreddit. The vernacular used within the subreddit has also become trending and is often used outside of the subreddit on social media sites like Twitter or TikTok. A collection of the acronyms used in r/AmItheAsshole is below.

  • WIBTA – Would I Be The Asshole – The poster has not done something yet, but wants to know if they would be an asshole if they were to proceed with doing said thing.
  • YTA – You’re The Asshole – The poster is being an asshole and should apologize to the person they are arguing with.
  • NTA – Not The Asshole – The poster is not the asshole, the person they are arguing with is.
  • NAH – No Assholes Here – Neither the poster nor the person they are arguing with are assholes, there is simply a misunderstanding.
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here – The poster and the person they are arguing with are both assholes.
  • INFO – More information is needed to make a decision on who is the asshole.

According to Enacademic, the term Aita can also refer to the Etruscan name for the underworld and the Etruscan word for the God of the underworld Hades, which was borrowed from the Greek. Etruscans envisioned Aita as a bearded man with a wolfskin cap. The Etruscan language is read backward, so in different depictions of Hades, one might see the name Aita written backwards. 

According to The Free Dictionary, the acronym AITA has a few other meanings besides “am I the asshole?” While these are still valid definitions, they are far less common and may cause confusion if used out of context. When using an acronym that has multiple different possible meanings, ensure you provide enough context so that the recipient can infer the correct meaning. 

  • Advanced Internet Technology and Applications (workshop)
  • Australian International Trade Association
  • All India Travel Agency (New Delhi, India)
  • Alabama Information Technology Association (est. 1999; Madison, AL)
  • America’s Independent Truckers’ Association, Inc.
  • All India Tennis Association (est. 1920; New Delhi, India)

How can AITA be used in a sentence?

AITA is most commonly used in the form of a question, i.e. “I refuse to apologize for killing my sister’s fish. AITA?” The abbreviated form of the phrase “am I the asshole” is usually used in the title of a post on the AITA subreddit. This term can also be sued when texting a friend if they are familiar with the Am I the Asshole subreddit.

What are other Reddit slang terms?

There are many different terms that might be confusing to a person that does not use Reddit or is new to the site. From the Reddit Glossary, here is a list of terms that one might want to familiarize themselves with before joining the site.

  • TIL – Today I Learned
  • NSFL – Not Safe For Life – A warning placed on extreme gore.
  • Sub – An individual subreddit.
  • AMAA – Ask Me Almost Anything
  • ELI5 – Explain like I’m 5 (years old) – People use this to request simpler explanations
  • EDIT – People use this to tag any edits to their posts or comments, usually used to clarify why they chose to edit it.
  • Mod – Moderator of a subreddit. They can shut down threads, remove comments or remove posts.
  • Karma – The point system Reddit uses.
  • THIS – Someone will comment this if they agree with a comment.
  • Reddiquette – Reddit’s rules, or the rules of a specific subreddit.
  • TL;DR – Too Long; Didn’t Read – Posters often post a short summery beginning with TL;DR after a lengthy post.
  • IMO – In My Opinion
  • ITT – In This Thread
  • IMHO – In My Humble (Honest) Opinion
  • NSFW – Not Safe For Work – A warning placed on sexual, violent, or gory content
  • Crosspost – A post that has been posted on 2 different subreddits
  • Cakeday – On the anniversary of the day a user joined Reddit, a little cake icon appears next to their name.
  • OP – Original Poster. The person who made the original post that is now being commented upon.
  • WIP – Work in progress.
  • IIRC – If I Recall Correctly
  • FTA – From The Article
  • MIC – More In Comments.
  • DAE – Does Anyone Else – People use this to ask if anyone else feels, thinks, or does a certain thing, or if they are alone.
  • AMA – Ask Me Anything
  • FTFY – Fixed That For You – Someone will comment FTFY is they slightly edit a comment or post to add clarity of humor
  • ETA – Edited to add

Overall, AITA most commonly stands for “Am I the Asshole?” This is a reference to the subreddit, or sub-forum of the message board site Reddit, r/AmItheAsshole. On this forum, people ask if they are being “the asshole” in the situation they are posting about and other people post their opinions as replies.

Sources:

  1. https://acronyms.thefreedictionary.com/Aita
  2. https://enacademic.com/dic.nsf/enwiki/3783416
  3. https://www.wired.co.uk/article/reddit-aita-obsessions
  4. https://www.reddit.com/r/amitheasshole
  5. https://www.reddit.com/r/TheoryOfReddit/wiki/glossary