What Does Yeet Mean? A Simple Guide To The Slang Internet Term Everyone's Using

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Self

Today I want to talk about one particular internet-based word and how you can use it without sounding bananas. The word is "yeet."

First, it's important that I tell you how much I love the internet. I love it.

I can vividly recall the first time I popped an AOL CD-ROM into my dad's old PC and the electric thrill of the dial-up sound made by the family modem. Thankfully, while modems and CD-ROMS are things of the past, my passion for the internet has not faded.

One of the reasons I keep coming back for more is because as I continue to age (why, God?!), the internet is the place that keeps me in touch with all that is hip and cool, and also lame and nerdy.

That's right — look out kids, I could be wandering your favorite internet enclaves trying to seem hip and young even as we speak.

But for all its splendor, the internet isn't just fun, it can also be overwhelming, particularly when it comes to stuff like trying to figure out different words and phrases, their history, and how to use them without sounding like an idiot (memories of my boss once saying "this pizza is on fleek" come to mind).

What does yeet mean?

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If you've been on the computer or you have kids, then chances are you've already heard it. But that said, do you know what it means, where it came from and how to use it correctly in a sentence? Fret not: I got you, boo. 

According to Urban Dictionary (the go to for all internet slang), yeet means "to discard an item at a high velocity."

To yeet someone, then, is to "throw" someone away, obviously metaphorically.

It also is used as an "exclamation of excitement, approval, surprise, or all-around energy, often as issued when doing a dance move or throwing something," according to Dictionary.com

Yeet was first mentioned in 2008 on Urban Dictionary and was defined as an excited exclamation, particularly in sports and sexual contexts, used in a phrase like, "That’s what I’m talking about it! Yeet Yeet!" Then in February 2014, the term spread through a song by Quill.

As many viral songs these days do, "Yeet" came complete with an accompanying dance move once someone known as Lil' Meatball uploaded his own Yeet video in February of the same year, and something about the kid and his moves translated into instant internet fame. That's right: Lil' Meatball went viral

The popular video-uploading app Vine (TikTok's predecessor) started featuring these videos known as "yeet dances." The slick dance move was characterized by a maneuver similar to throwing a basketball when someone has shot a three-pointer.

So, to sum up, the "Yeet Dance" was something just a few people were trying out on Vine... until Lil' Meatball and all his awkward glory came onto the scene and made #yeet the new Carlton dance.

After his video went viral, all yeet videos were basically impressions of the kid or people trying to up the yeet ante.

It's also known for going viral in a 2016 vine where a young girl in school throws an empty can into a crowded hallway screaming, "this b*tch empty, YEET!"

Because it was such a major movement on the web for a while, kids started to pick up the word and now use yeet as an exclamation.

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How do you use yeet in a sentence?

Now, the way yeet is most commonly used is as an exclamation after throwing something.

Is yeeted a real word?

Surprisingly yes, because yeeted is the past tense of yeet. This word was used a lot in the famous yeet baby memes. 

Isn't it strange how things evolve?

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And now, because I'm nothing if not a kind evil internet overlord of web slang, here are some of my favorite yeet videos to help educate you on the dance craze that stormed the nation back in the halcyon days of 2014.

1. The OG...

This dance set the internet on fire, and, as they say, the rest is history. Just look at that impeccable timing.

2. Sorry, Simba...

Would any viral slang or sensation be complete without a Disney remix?

3. Go long...

Seriously, can I send you my mixtape?

4. Yeet party...

Now this is how you get the party going!

5. Sorry, soda...

Hey, when it's not your favorite flavor, you don't just drink it, right?

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Rebecca Jane Stokes is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York with her cats, Batman and Margot. She's an experienced generalist with a passion for lifestyle, geek news, pop culture, and true crime.