All Ears English Podcast - 1902: Add this New TikTok Slang to your Business English Vocabulary

This is an All Ears English podcast, episode 1902.

Add this new TikTok slang to your business English vocabulary.

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Would you pass the vibe check?

Today we share three new English slang phrases from social media that are being adopted into


Listen in so that you don’t miss this brand new slang to connect with friends and co-workers.

Hello Aubrey.

How’s it going today?

I am great, Lindsay.

How are you?

I’m excited to be here.

Today’s episode is on video, so guys, you can always check us out over on YouTube.

Make sure you hit subscribe to our channel.

Aubrey, what are we talking about today?

Yes, we’re talking about very new slang that has become popular on social media.

It’s sort of had these TikTok campaigns where people really get behind it and start using

it a lot.

So we’re starting to see it more and more.

And I think it’s going to be adopted into the business world, into regular conversation.

So you guys are the first to hear here on All Ears English.

If you haven’t heard them on social media, we’re going to give you all of this great

new slang.

Isn’t that crazy?

I mean, the fact that new language can come up from social media.

I mean, I guess new language has always come up in the past, but where did it come from


I know it’s fascinating, right?

I feel like often teenagers make it up.

And I think in this case, it is still sort of 20 somethings that are creating it originally.

But the difference is, I think in the past, it took a lot longer to become popularized.

But now with all ages on social media, it sort of is more like a flash flood or flash

fire, when you call that, where it just like spreads like a wildfire.

Okay, a flash flood and wildfire, I mean, both spread like crazy, right?

That’s the idiom spread like wildfire.

Spread like wildfire.

I love it.

Guys, that’s your bonus idiom for today.

Write that one down.

Aubrey, why is it important that our listeners know about this?

I mean, why don’t we just stick to the good old English and the textbooks?

Oh man, English evolves and it evolves fast, especially when it comes to slang.

You know, some slang goes away, some replaces it.

You want to know what people are saying, what they mean when they use this new slang.

And you want to be able to use it to build connections at work, with friends, family.

This is how natives are speaking.

And you guys shouldn’t hesitate to use this fun new slang.

Yeah, I love it.

And guys, go back to episode 1895.

Because that topic, that topic of quiet quitting, which Aubrey and I explored the cultural side

of that, right?

The societal side of that, what that means for us as workers.

That phrase also came from social media, we’re assuming, right, Aubrey?

You know, that’s exactly right.

It came originally from TikTok and there was a big campaign, a big push to start using



And yeah.

And so we want to talk a little bit more about that term.

But like you said, 1895, we did more of a deep dive about, you know, what is that?

What is quiet quitting?


If you missed it, we’re going to briefly share here.

But if you want more info and a really interesting discussion about it, make sure to check out

episode 1895.

And that would also make a great debate topic, guys.

If you have any friends that love debating, you could actually do a debate with someone

on that.

And I think it would be really rich.

There’s no right or wrong answer.

But I could argue both sides of quiet quitting, right?

It’s good stuff.

So okay.

So again, what does it mean quiet quitting?

Because that is kind of the first phrase from today.

And then we’ll move on to the next ones that are new for our listeners.

Yes, exactly.

This is a rejection of that hustle culture where we’re really doing everything we can

to succeed at work and maybe letting our personal life slip a little bit.

So we’re trying to get a work life balance and quiet quitting is going the opposite extreme

of that, where you’re maybe doing as little as possible at work to avoid getting stressed



Kind of interesting.

Yeah, for sure.

And this is something that’s really come up after the pandemic because more people are

working from home, so it’s a little bit easier for people to kind of slip into this state.


So guys, go back to 1895.

Listen to that whole episode.

It is super rich.

So good.


But here are a couple of example sentences just so you can see how we would use it in


We might say, I’m thinking about quiet quitting.

I’ve been working way too much.


Or you’re clearly quiet quitting.

You never come to the office anymore.

And I can imagine this, you know, it’s not so common that everyone has heard this.

I’ve been bringing it up in conversations and about half the people I talk to know what

I’m referring to.

Oh, interesting.

So it’s interesting conversations.

It’s kind of fun to be the one introducing a new term.

But then I had a friend call me and say, I’m so glad you told me about quiet quitting because

then someone brought it up at work and they were talking about.

I love that.

Yeah, that does happen for our listeners.

When they become aware of a topic or a term, then they hear it everywhere.

And now you guys can participate in these conversations.

That’s connection, Aubrey.

Exactly right.

To be prepared to know.

And it’s also OK to be the person saying, I’m not sure what that is.

What are you talking about?

That is OK, too.

But it is fun to be the one sort of introducing or knowing about something new and interesting.


Be that person.

Be that person.

All right.

So here’s another phrase.

What’s the next one, Aubrey, that our listeners need to know from the TikTok world?


This is villain era.

So villain like the opposite of a hero.

The bad guy.


Uh huh.

And era, like a time, a period, a time period.

Oh, this means a shift in behavior where a person is sort of rejecting this societal

pressure to always be nice or respectful or reasonable.

And they just start kind of being a jerk.

They’re like embracing their villain era.

Do you know anyone who’s done that, Lindsay, anyone who’s had a villain era?

Geez, I don’t know.

But the first thing I think about when you define that, I think about gender differences.


Because I think women are really taught more so, at least in the U.S., that they can’t

be villains, that they have to be kind of those words that you said, nice, reasonable,




And I do.

The one person I can think of that is right now in their villain era, I won’t name any


But is a male.


That’s true.

No, maybe not there, I’m sure women can enter a villain era, but it is true that in at least

an American culture.


And I know elsewhere in the world this happens where sometimes men, just based on their gender,

do feel less of a need, a drive to be polite and respectful and nice.

And so they are a little more likely to have a villain era.

Now is that someone in your life, Aubrey, or a famous public figure that you’re talking


Someone in my own life.


Do you have a villain?

I do.

I have someone that he just has sort of decided, like, why do I need to be so nice and kind

and respectful?

And he’s sort of not as much.

And I’ve had some conversations where I’m like, this, this is why you need to be nice

and kind and respectful.

Hopefully it will be a short-lived villain era.


It’s funny, though, to me, this concept, because I feel like humans don’t flip from like one

day they’re not nice and the next day they’re mean all the time.

It’s more like it depends on the moment sometimes for people.

It’s a journey, too.

Like, yeah, I can see the sort of progression of things that happened in his life that have

caused him to start being this way.

Anger and rejection of religion and society and, you know, personal things, personal issues

that are happening that are that are changing his life drastically and making him realize

being a good guy wasn’t really working for me, or at least is what he’s sort of thinking.


Why should I?




Well, all right.

That’s good stuff.

So guys, think about that.

There are some movies where they’re becoming kind of a villain.


Stay away.

There are some interesting ways you could use this at work.


It doesn’t always have to be a person.

What if you said like you’re talking with coworkers about a project you’re both working


You could say, if this project were a human, it would be in its villain era.


I love that so much.

You’re saying, I hate this project.

Everything’s going wrong.

It’s difficult.

That’s what you’re saying.

This project is in a villain era.

Or you could say this client is in their villain era.

So maybe if you work with clients in the beginning, the client was nice and kind, and then you’re

not delivering on the results.

You said you would.

So now they’re getting angry.



And mean.

Yeah, for sure.


Good stuff.

All right.

Is there another one that comes from TikTok?

One more.

It’s the vibe check.

And I use this.

I’ve heard people use it a lot.

And I start using it just to say she passes the vibe check.

If you meet someone new, it measures how cool someone is or how fun.


So when you vibe check someone as a verb, you’re sort of assessing them.

But it’s a it’s a very positive thing to pass a vibe check.


But what does cool even mean anymore?

I don’t even know what that word means.

I knew what it meant when I was in middle school.

So someone who passes the vibe check for me might not pass the vibe check for you, Lindsay.


Because that means I like them.

I think they’re cool.

We have a lot in common.

I would like to hang out with them.

They pass the vibe check.



It’s so subjective.

It’s so subjective is what you mean.

Oh, yeah.

Let’s give some sample sentences for our listeners.


Just super simple.


He passes the vibe check or she failed the vibe check.

Maybe you go out for drinks for someone and it’s just not fun.

You’re not vibing because we also use it that way to say we’re not vibing bonus.

You’re not vibing.

Someone there is not passing the vibe check.

I love it.

This makes me also think of the phrase the sniff test a little bit, but that’s a slightly

different like sniffing out if something is legit or if there’s something weird going

on, if someone’s being honest.


Yeah, exactly.

We could do another episode on that another day.

But it made me think of that concept.


And what about this?

If you say, I haven’t decided if that passes the vibe check and this wouldn’t have to be

a person you could say, I haven’t decided if he or she passes the vibe check, but also

maybe something at work that’s happening.

You’re like, I don’t know if I want to agree to that.

I don’t know if I want to take on that task or that project.


I’m not sure it’s passed the vibe check yet.

I love that.


So Aubrey, I think our listeners need to see this stuff in a role play here.

I mean, for me, to be honest, villain era, it’s the first time I’ve heard this.

So this is new for me.

I love when you learn new stuff.

I don’t hang out on TikTok almost pretty much never.

I’m never on TikTok.

So this is good.

It’s good to learn something new with our listeners alongside them.

What’s going on in this role play?

So you and our coworkers in this role play, and we’re discussing a colleague that has

been exhibiting some surprising behavior.


All right.

What do you think is going on with Brad?

I feel like he’s entered a villain era.


Something’s up with him.

He may also be quiet quitting.

He only comes to the office once a week.

I was never really sure if he passed the vibe check.

Oh, okay.

So now we’re questioning him entirely, right?



Based on some behaviors.

And I kind of love this, that there’s nothing really mean here.

There are much meaner things you could say, like, I can’t stand that guy.

He’s the worst.

Instead, we’re using this new slang to be sort of highbrow about how we discuss his



That’s a good one.

Oh my gosh.

There’s so much good bonus vocab for our listeners today.

What is highbrow?

I’m sure that one will be highlighted in the app for today.

What does that mean?

This is an adjective that I use it synonymously with classy.

We’re being a little classier, right?

We’re trying to say something in a more respectful way that doesn’t get like lowbrow.

The opposite would be kind of not classy, saying things that don’t feel very respectful

or kind.

We’re just trying to keep it classy.


It’s good to default to just being kind, you know, as much as you can.

And if, you know, what’s that old expression our parents used to tell us, like, if you

don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.

Well, but here’s the interesting thing.

I think about highbrow is it’s not always about kind.

I would say the opposite often.

I think when people sometimes are trying to be like classy and highbrow, often they become

more condescending and patronizing.

Yes, that can happen too.

Also not kind.

So that’s fascinating to think about.

It’s definitely not a synonym for kind.

Classy doesn’t mean kind.

It means trying to be, I guess, respectful is not even the best word.

It’s trying to say things in sort of an educated way, maybe a thoughtful way, but that isn’t

always kind.

Oh, tricky.

Maybe someday we do an episode on the differences between kind, classy, all of these ways of

describing someone.


I love that.

Oh, good guys.

Hit follow right now on All Ears English so that you don’t miss that episode in the future.

So let’s go through this, Aubrey.

What did we say here?

You said you started with asking what’s going on with a coworker.

And I said, I feel like he’s entered a villain era.

And this would be for sure.

Like if we’re noticing, oh, he’s just not coming to the office.

He’s coming.

I’m definitely exaggerating here.


This is hyperbole.

I’m using words that are really blowing things out of proportion.

And I’m saying, oh, he’s in a villain era.

I mean, not really.

He’s just not coming into the office a lot.


And then I said he may also be quiet quitting.


And I’m saying that because it doesn’t seem like he’s putting as much effort.

And guys, again, go back to 1895 if you’re not totally sure, again, what that really



Ask for a deep dive.

But I was never really sure if he passed the vibe check.

So that’s sort of a way of saying I never really knew if I liked that guy.

I was never really sure he was going to fit in here.

Something like that.

This is so modern and new.

What’s the takeaway for our listeners here?

Slang is constantly evolving.

New slangs created, adopted and normalized every day on social media, wherever it happens.

And I think one of the most difficult things about language learning is knowing which slang

you can use and which is sort of only used by teenagers.

That’s what I want to make sure to follow here.

We always make sure to be clear about what slang you can use.

Yeah, guys.


We don’t limit what we teach you here just to the textbook.

You get so much more at Allers English.

So hit follow and we’ll see you on the next episode.

Aubrey, thanks for bringing this great TikTok slang today.

This has been fun as always.

Thanks, Lindsay.

I’ll see you next time.

Take care.


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