In praise of "fam"


I don’t know why but I love the word fam(family) and have been using it with alarming frequency.

Anyone else love fam, fam?


I thought fam was a London thing until I started hearing Americans use it.


Not… without ironic intent, just yet? But I want to.

In concept I appreciate it as a term of endearment, but I think so far I’ve heard it used exclusively as part of memes/mockery of people using it as shorthand. Love the idea. It’s family, but looser. Less formal, without the baggage. Perfect description of so many interpersonal relationships.

It’s also gender neutral, unlike “dudes” or “hey guys…” etc. which have to be adjusted in understanding to be assumed intent gender neutral.


I’ve been avoiding using it lately because sometimes I get some appropriative vibes from it, but I don’t know if/to what extent that’s true


I am a fan of fam. I probably am weird though, because I only actually use it in conversation with two other people I know and one of them is my brother. It’s like this weird half joking, half serious, and oddly personal term for me? Language is very cool.


Jeff’s reaction here is what I get when people say it without, um, “irony”.


I never really use it in person but when messaging people that shit’s lit af fam.


yeah, i love it but i’m still not sure if it’s just a regional thing that has spread or a black youth culture thing.

my current favorite instance of it right now is Santan Dave saying it a couple of times at the end of the Teenage Fever track off Drake’s More Life.


This was also my understanding of it, which has made the spread a little difficult (especially since some folks don’t know that it has a London lineage too).


I try not to use it very often except sparing because I’m white and majorly adopting AAVE (African American Vernacular English) is not a good look for me. Obviously some things my friends and I say regularly have passed into my vocabulary (salty, etc) but a lot of what nerd/meme/internet culture considers hip is directly from Black Twitter and Vines of black teens and it’s largely uncredited and goes unremarked and becomes an adopted speech form for “jokes” and no recognition that that’s how a lot of people talk. This is why thinkpieces that are like, “MILLENIALS SAY BAE TOO MUCH” are so atonal; they have no recognition that this isn’t just a weird teen trend, but something with a particular usage/meaning and culture around it.


I’m bad at the whole millennial and internet thing most days. So no.


I’m a white guy from the Midlands, so I tend not to use it that much round here. I like the sentiment, but I have other phrases. Like whomst’d’ve.



It’s very strange hearing Americans go crazy over “fam” as people have been saying it in the UK for a very long time.


African American people in america have been using Fam for a very long time as well. At least the last decade if not more. I think the current American non-black fascination with the phrase comes from the more general acceptance of some parts of black culture (think dabbing or the mannequin challenge.)


I’m down fam.

In my family, we seem to like three letters for everything. Fam, Bro, Sis, Dad, Mom and so forth. No Vaca(tion) or Cas(ual) allowed tho, those are so… ugh.