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See also: wtf


Alternative forms[edit]



  1. (military slang, Internet slang, text messaging, vulgar) Initialism of what the fuck.
    • 1985, Dick Dunn, “China Cat lyrics - explanations?”, in (Usenet):
      I've READ them; I know what all the words are. I still say, "WTF, over?" Someone's playing with our heads on this one, but what's all the word stew?
    • 1994, Marat Fayzullin, “Re: MMM”, in (Usenet):
      Now, please, explain WTF did you mean by this text?
    • 2005, “defect violation”, “Re: WTF!!”, in (Usenet):
      WTF are you on about? We played some very good football for most of the match, []
    • 2019, 20 November, Carol Midgley, "Prince Andrew is ‘not very quick on his feet’, says the Duchess of York. What of her?" (in The Times newspaper)
      WTF was that about?
  2. (rare) Where the fuck, why the fuck, when the fuck, or who the fuck.

Usage notes[edit]

  • WTF, like the full expression what the fuck, may be used either to introduce a question or as an interjection:
    WTF are you talking about? (question)
    WTF! That's a load of bull! (interjection)
  • WTF is sometimes spelled or written out in the NATO phonetic alphabet: whiskey tango foxtrot.
  • WTF is not usually considered as offensive as the full expression what the fuck.

Alternative forms[edit]

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Related terms[edit]


Proper noun[edit]


  1. (sports, taekwondo, dated, 1973–2017) Initialism of World Taekwondo Federation.
    Synonym: WT
    • 1998, The complete Idiot's guide to Taekwondo:
      Likewise the WTF says they are the official Tae Kwon Do organization because []
    • 2003, Taekwondo: A Step-By-Step Guide to the Korean Art of Self-Defense:
      The International Olympic Committee (IOC) recognizes WTF at its 83rd []
    • 2005, Official Taekwondo Training Manual:
      The Secretariat of the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) is located in Seoul, South Korea, in a beautiful edifice []
    • 2015 December 26, “WTF? Taekwondo governing body set for rebrand over use of acronym”, in The Guardian[1]:
      The WTF secretary general, Hoss Rafaty, told insidethegames that the governing body would look to market itself as World Taekwondo for business and commercial purposes, although there are no current plans to officially change the organisation’s name.