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

Do you know the definition of TBD? This guide will provide you with all of the info you need on the acronym TBD, including its definition, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the acronym TBD stand for?

According to Urban Dictionary and Cyber Definitions, the internet slang term TBD stands for “to be determined.” This term, like TBC and TBA, which mean to be confirmed and to be announced, is a placeholder term to let people know that something is yet to be decided. If something is still to be determined, this means that it has not been decided upon yet. For example, if two people have just gotten engaged and someone asks them when the wedding is, they might say, “it’s still to be determined,” or “TBD.”

According to The Free Dictionary, the acronym TBD also has numerous other definitions. While these definitions are accurate, they are definitely less common than using TBD to mean “to be determined.” Therefore, one should use these terms sparingly. Make sure you provide proper context when using one of these alternate definitions so that the person you are sending it to does not get confused. Use acronyms that have multiple meanings with caution.

  • Trial by Declaration (traffic law)
  • To Be Dated
  • Technischer Beratungsdienst (German: Technical Consultancy)
  • To Be Decided
  • To Be Destroyed
  • Totally Brain Dead
  • Time to Break Down
  • To Be Developed
  • There Be Dragons
  • Tick-Borne Diseases
  • The Best Deceptions (band)
  • Tampa Bay Drunks
  • Too Busy Disorder (humor)
  • Tableau de Bord des Devoirs (French: Homework Dashboard; online students’ time management tutorial; France)
  • Thousand Barrels Per Day (petroleum measurement)
  • Thought by Design (UK)
  • Task-Based Development (software development)
  • Track Before Detect
  • Thai Bangkaew Dog
  • The Big Duck (landmark; Long Island, NY)
  • Time/Bearing Display
  • The Boomer Destination
  • Transmit Buffer Descriptor
  • To Be Discussed
  • To Be Done
  • Terminal Bomber Defense
  • Treasury Board Directive (Canada)
  • Target Bearing Designator (US Navy)
  • Triangular Barrier Diode
  • Training by Design
  • Too Bad, Dude
  • 1,5,7-Triazabicyclo[4.4.0]dec-5-ene (bicyclic guanidine base)
  • To be Demanded
  • Taco Bell Dog
  • To Be Defined
  • Torpedo – Boat – Destroyer
  • The Black Donnellys (TV show)
  • Tape Backup Device
  • T Baldwin Demerest School (Old Tappan, New Jersey)
  • To Be Detailed
  • Technical Background Document
  • Technical Basis Document
  • To Be Discontinued
  • The Bulgarian Devastation (gaming clan)
  • Team Baby Dick (gaming clan)
  • Douglas Devastator Torpedo Bomber (WW II)
  • Tibetan Book of the Dead (song)
  • Ten Business Days
  • To Be Deleted
  • Teddy Bear Dreams (television show)
  • Technical Baseline Document
  • Trunk Based Development (computing)

What are synonyms and antonyms for the acronym TBD?

There are many different words you can use to mean “to be determined” that are not acronyms. These are called synonyms, which are words and phrases that have an identical meaning to a given word or phrase. One might choose to use a synonym for TBD if they want to avoid using an acronym and need to come across more polite or formal, or if they simply want to avoid repeating themselves or expand their vocabulary. This list of synonyms for the acronym TBD is provided by Thesaurus

  • unproven
  • irresolute
  • undecided
  • pending
  • unsettled
  • obscure
  • indeterminate
  • undetermined
  • doubtful
  • unclear
  • equivocal
  • wavering
  • unknown
  • vague
  • abeyant
  • faint

There are also numerous words that mean the opposite of to be determined. These are called antonyms. It is very useful to know antonyms for certain words, especially if you tend to negate things by placing a “not” in front of a word or phrase. It is much smoother and more grammatically correct to use an antonym for to be determined rather than saying “not to be determined.” This list of antonyms for TBD is also from Thesaurus

  • certain
  • emphatic
  • sure
  • clear
  • on ice
  • indisputable
  • cinched
  • determined
  • predetermined
  • destined
  • assured
  • in the bag
  • nailed
  • unmistakable
  • runaway
  • settled
  • resolved
  • unambiguous
  • definite
  • fated
  • pronounced
  • unquestionable
  • undisputed
  • explicit
  • absolute
  • unalterable
  • clear-cut
  • clinched
  • distinct
  • unequivocal
  • decided
  • for sure
  • undeniable
  • positive
  • categorical
  • express
  • prearranged

How can the acronym TBD be used in a sentence?

TBD is a very common acronym and can be seen in many different sentences in order to express something that has not yet been decided. In this first example, Wanda and Heather are discussing their wedding day with their wedding planner. They are feeling a bit in over their heads.

Wedding Planner: So, have you two chosen a date?

Wanda: No, that’s still TBD.

Wedding Planner: No worries, we can come up with one together. How about a theme or color scheme?

Heather: Nope, still TBD.

Wedding Planner: Do you have a guest list? Or even a number of guests you plan to invite?

Wanda: That’s actually still…

Wedding Planner: TBD?

Here, Wanda and Heather use TBD to tell their wedding planner that they do not yet have anything decided with regard to their wedding. In this next example, Wanda and Heather are at their engagement party and Heather’s nosy aunt is asking them numerous questions.

Heather’s Aunt: I’m so happy for you two! I can’t wait until you have kids. Do you plan to wait long? I’m getting old, I want to meet them!

Heather: Auntie, that’s still TBD. We probably want to have a little time as a married couple before thinking about that.

Heather’s Aunt: Oh, please. I’m sure you’ll change your mind. Which one of you plans to carry the child?

Heather: We don’t know yet. That’s a conversation for a later time–

Heather’s Aunt: And how will you actually DO that?

Overall, the acronym TBD typically stands for “to be determined.” This phrase is often used as a placeholder term to let people know some detail, action, or event is yet to be decided. Abbreviations like TBD are commonly used in event planning and many other industries.

Sources:

  1. https://acronyms.thefreedictionary.com/TBD
  2. https://www.thesaurus.com/browse/undetermined
  3. https://www.thesaurus.com/browse/decided
  4. https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=TBD
  5. https://www.cyberdefinitions.com/definitions/TBD.html