What does based mean on social media and in forums?


Social media and forum users use the word based to mean "I agree" or "that's cool." This slang term has an extensive history, but in its current form, it was first popularized by rapper Brandon "Lil B" McCartney - aka The BasedGod.

What is the origin of based?

In the past, calling someone based was meant to label them as freaky or eccentric. This variation of based was derived from the term basehead, which describes a person who freebases cocaine.

However, when critics began calling Lil B based, the rapper decided to reclaim the term. According to Lil B, "[b]ased means being yourself. Not being scared of what people think about you. Not being afraid to do what you wanna do."

This version of based took off on 4chan. At first, posters in 4chan's music forums used based to praise experimental music. Then, the word migrated to 4chan's politics forums, where right-wing posters used based to agree with controversial actions they found brave.

Over time, based migrated into other netizens' lexicons. It is now most often used to agree with controversial opinions. However, based is also sometimes used sarcastically, to mock those who have absurd opinions or are doing absurd things.


I've started mixing my coffee with OJ; it rocks.
Redditors discussing the definition of based
Redditors discussing the definition of based

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Updated October 21, 2021

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This page explains what the slang term "Based" means. The definition, example, and related terms listed above have been written and compiled by the team.

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