Re: pronouncing "www"

Keith Dawson (
Sat, 11 Sep 1999 13:24:10 -0400

At 12:56 PM -0400 9/11/99, Joseph S. Barrera III wrote:
> I've taken to pronouncing "www" as "dub-dub-dub" (or actually, if
> you listen closely, "duh-duh-dub") because life is too short to
> say "double-you double-you double-you". Does anyone else do this?

Did this to death in TBTF a year and a half ago [1], [2], FWIW.



>>From TBTF for 1998-05-11:

..Lizard lips

How to pronounce http://www

I've long been a fan of pronouncing "www" as triple-dub, a neologism
proposed in one of Wired's first Jargon Watch columns. Several other
suggestions for verbalizing URLs appeared recently on the newsgroup
alt.religion.kibology, whose chaos is presided over by James "Kibo"
Parry <kibo at world dot std dot com>. The newsgroup sprang up in
the days before the Web out of the conviction that Kibo must be God.
Parry had set up filters on a full Usenet newsfeed and was known for
sending email, posthaste, to anyone who used the word "Kibo" in any
Usenet posting. Kibo's posting is an object lesson in quoting a
discussion thread and running it off a cliff. See why they think
he's God?

>>:>I want to invent a time machine just so I can kill the guy
>>:>who named the letter W and have its named changed to "wee."

>>:You know, I've always been meaning to introduce "wee wee wee"
>>:as a pronunciation of "www", but I've had such little occa-
>>:sion to pronounce an URL aloud.

>>I've gotten a couple of other DJs at the radio station to an-
>>nounce our URL as "hut-up wow", but I haven't heard anyone
>>else say it that way yet.

>My preferred pronounciation is "Hat Tip, Woo Woo" but I can't
>get anyone to use it. Maybe if I actually paid them to do it.

But this skirts the real issue: what's the name of "://"?
I like to call it "lizard lips" because we all know that
sideways lizard faces have diagonal lips. Nowadays most
smileys are too kissable.


Notice, in the second quoted passage, that the writer appears to
believe that "URL" is pronounced "earl." Must be a newbie. Coming to
you live from hat-top, lizard-lips, triple-dub, tee-bee-tee-eff dot
com, I remain, yrs. sincerely, &tc.

>>From TBTF for 1998-05-18:


Yadda-yadda, wack-wack, and other oddities

One of the reasons I ran the piece on pronouncing "http://www" in
the previous issue was to mitigate a case of internesia [27]: an age
ago in Net time I had come across a lonely one-man campaign to get
Web-site owners to name their sites "web dot" in place of, or in
addition to, "www dot," but promptly lost track of where on the Net
I had seen this suggestion. Figured someone would send it to me in
response to "Lizard lips" [28]; and so several folks did.

Dave Yost is the man and his WebDot campaign [29] is perking along
nicely. A quick check with Infoseek reveals more than half a million
"web." URLs out of its database of 25 million.

Here is a selection from the mailbag in response to "Lizard lips."
(Correspondents from the current and former British Empire will note
that I have regularized punctuation around quotes to the American

- Danny O'Brien <danny at spesh dot com>: At NTK, we're pushing
very hard for "www" to be replaced by "yadda yadda yadda." Not
shorter than the alternatives, but more descriptive of
prospective site content. [And appropriate for the week of the
last Seinfeld episode as well -- ed.]

- Richard Probst <rprobst at calicotech dot com>: I once heard
Tim Berners-Lee say that he chose the name "World Wide Web"
because he wanted the name to have fewer syllables than the

- Pete Murray <pmurray at carlson-marketing dot co dot uk>: A
free booklet with "Tomorrows World" magazine suggested the
commonly accepted pronunciation was HIT WEB (?!)

- Hendrik Levsen <hendrik at levsen dot org>: We in Gemany are
better off, since "www" spells "way way way" in German. This
is what everybody should do: name their sites without www and
have them be reachable with the www, too. But publish the
no-www name.

- allen hurst <allanh at spectrum dot us dot com>: I usually
call "//" "wack-wack," and "www" "wuh-wuh-wuh." It's weird,
but people always know what I'm talking about. Hence:
huttup-colon, wack-wack, wuh-wuh-wuh dot, tee-bee- tee-eff dot
com. I derived this unusual verbiage from a poem entitled
"waka-waka-bang-splat" [30]. I figured if "<" or ">" was a
"waka", then half of one of those ("/") must be a "wack."
Making little chopping motions with one's hand while
enunciating the URL also helps.

- Joshua Newman <Joshua_Newman at heald dot edu>:
"Aitch-tee-tee-pee, double-dotter, wack-wack, three-dub dot"
and go on from there. This should be said as quickly as
possible, perhaps by a coffee auctioneer.

- Ian Douglas <iandoug at lia dot net>: Me, I always say
"wawawa," which invariably gets really weird looks from people
hearing it for the first time. They seem to think I have
regressed to baby talk.

- Julianne Chatelain <julianne at trellix dot com>: Over a year
ago, Dave Shaw proposed "three-dub" as the quickest
(2-syllable) way to say "www."

- David Long <dxlong at aol dot net>: Three w's must surely be a

- Ray Jones <rjones at pobox dot com>: I've suggested, and
sometimes used, "WOOGA WOOGA WOOGA" for "www". Best said in
such a way that "DIVE! DIVE!" is the expected continuation.

- Shirien Stevens <sstevens at darkwing dot uoregon dot edu>:
[16 months ago Stevens proposed "triplya" for "www"; details
here. -- ed.]

- Thom Stark <thomst at netcom dot com>: I've been pressing a
campaign to pronounce www as "woo-woo." Everybody "gets it"
immediately and, at a mere two syllables, it cuts down on
incidents of fumblemouth pretty effectively.

- Jeremy Cromwell <jcromwel at dantel dot com>: I don't know the
source, but the most succinct and memorable pronunciation of
"http://www" that I've ever heard is "hot splash wow."

- Dennis Moul <dmm at city-net dot com>: Having recently watched
Keanu Reeves in Johnny Mnemonic again, it occurs to me that
his use of the command "Hit me!" to start the cybernetic
download of gigabytes of data into his brain implant is an
appropriate way to describe the first part of URLs, which we
all use to overload ourselves with information on a daily
basis. Using "Hit me" for "http://" also fits in nicely with
the "whack" theme that several other posters have suggested.