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It all began in 2004, when Jones, a software engineer, received some odd instant messages at work, using terms such as "idk" and "lyk." It was all Greek to Jones.Jones, a computer programmer in Allen Park, Michigan, quickly realized the messages weren't from his boss -- they were from his boss' children who were hanging out at the office with their father for the day.
The Anti-Drug, the Partnership for a Drug-Free America and the Office of National Drug Control Policy have lists of street terms and slang, including those specific to drug or sexual activity.
Once you get the hang of the language, you can try your hand at translating a real message found by Susan Shankle and Barbara Melton, co-authors of the book "What in the World Are Your Kids Doing Online?
1 ju57 n33d 4 |177|3 4nd 1 c4n p4y y0u b4ck 0n m0nd4y, 1 pr0m153." Translation: "I was so jacked up last night.
I scored some crack at the party so I'd have it for tonight and tomorrow, and then Jimmy took off with it, the [expletive]!
"Parents write me thank you notes all the time, and I occasionally get hate letters from teens," he says.
Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden agrees that parents need to wise up to what their kids are saying to each other online."There's a broad range of terms that even vigilantly monitoring parents may not recognize," says Ernie Allen, president of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children."Kids are developing their own language and don't want anyone to know what it is." If you see terms that are unfamiliar to you, go to one of several translators and dictionaries that help parents decipher the terms that teens use in chat rooms, text messages and instant messaging boards.I am all jittery and need to meet up with you tonight after my parents think i am asleep.Can you meet me at Bojangle's at midnight just for a few minutes?"But then it occurred to me the slang was actually really creative and saved time and keystrokes.I was talking to some of the other programmers, and we thought it would be a cool idea to start a website that had translations of the slang that kids use." Jones created in 2005, and as more readers have submitted terms related to drugs and sex, what started out as a fun little lexicon of innocuous shortcuts has become a valuable educational tool for parents to learn about what their children are up to.I just need a little and I can pay you back on Monday, I promise."CNN's Sabriya Rice contributed to this report.Please add a one-time donation to help fund our most urgent campaigns to fight discrimination and expand LGBTQ rights.You won't find every drug- and sex-related term on Jones' website.While readers have submitted thousands of examples of slang, he refuses to include ones that are just too disgusting.