Save This Word!

Real Estate. dishwasher (def. 2).
"Is" it time for a new quiz? "Are" you ready? Then prove your excellent skills on using "is" vs. "are."
Question 1 of 7
IS and ARE are both forms of which verb?

Other definitions for DW (2 of 2)


dock warrant.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022


What else does DW mean?

DW can stand for everything from devil worshipper to Doctor Who, but on the internet, it’s usually short for don’t worry.

DW is also a much-memed character from the Arthur children’s stories and TV show.

Where does DW come from?

If you’re German, you’ll know DW as Deutsche Welle, which is like German’s version of BBC or NPR. But dw, we won’t bore you with that.

As with many other internet acronyms, it’s hard to pin down exactly when DW emerges as short for don’t worry, but it’s likely in the 1990s with the rise of internet forums and text-messaging.

Don’t worry is a fairly common stock phrase in the English language. Given its relative commonness, it’s easy to imagine why digital communicators wanted to save time and space with a DW shorthand.

The character DW from the children’s 1990s–2000s series Arthur also deserves a mention. Short for Dora Winifred, DW is the title aardvark’s overly dramatic but loving younger sister. She often revels in getting her brother in trouble. Perhaps it is her expressive personality that has made her character such prolific meme fodder in the 2000s.

How is DW used in real life?

Wherever you may use the versatile don’t worry in speech or writing, you can use DW to convey the same meaning.

It’s considered informal, though, and doesn’t have as widespread recognition as other internet acronyms such as OMG.

It can be issued as a genuine way to allay concerns.

It can also be used more ironically, a way to say “stay out of my business.”


This content is not meant to be a formal definition of this term. Rather, it is an informal summary that seeks to provide supplemental information and context important to know or keep in mind about the term’s history, meaning, and usage.

How to use DW in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for DW


abbreviation for
dock warrant
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012