What Does “AFK” Mean on Discord?

What Does &Quot;Afk&Quot; Mean On Discord

Discord is a social media app initially popular with gamers and software developers. Currently, it accommodates all user types, including people who want a messaging and video-sharing platform to connect with friends and family.

Unlike other social media apps, Discord offers a unique communication system called servers. Like-minded individuals join servers to form communities.

Servers are not the only thing unique to Discord. It also has different lingo users use to communicate with followers and friends.

One of the terms you may regularly encounter on Discord is “afk.” But what does it mean?

Quick Answer

“Afk” is an abbreviation for “away from keyboard.” Discord users use this term to inform others that they are offline or inactive for some time. An excellent example of using “afk” is when you are playing a game on Discord but want to take a short break. You can message fellow players on the server saying I’ll be “afk” for about 20 minutes.

You’re not alone if you’re struggling with the meanings of Discord slang like afk. This post will explore the meaning and different contexts for using afk.

Overview of AFK on Discord

As noted above, “afk” means “away from the keyboard.” People use this term to let other participants know they will be unavailable for a while.

The use of “afk” isn’t limited to Discord. “Afk” is a general internet slang usable in different contexts and scenarios, including on other social media apps.

For example, if you were messaging a friend but want to take a break and have dinner, you can respond to their last message by saying, ‘I’ll be afk for 20 minutes. My dinner is ready.’

You can also use “afk” to inform someone of your unavailability for a set period.

Suppose you are catching up with a friend by text, and they ask you out for lunch, but you plan to stay indoors because of upcoming exams. In that case, you can respond with ‘I’ll be afk until the exam week ends. We can meet the Saturday after that.’

Next, we’ll discuss the application of “afk” on Discord.

Uses of AFK on Discord

Even though afk’s primary use is to inform others that you are unavailable, its application on Discord can vary.

Discord has voice channels administrators and moderators use to host various events. These events demand maximum participation as they have limited slots. 

Anyone participating in the channel’s event should use “afk” if they want to take a break.

This will let other active participants know you’re unavailable to comment for the duration of your absence. It also helps moderators or the admin keep track of the number of active participants and their online statuses.

Usually, moderators set a time limit for “afk” participants because of the limited slots. When some members are “afk” for long, they prevent users who genuinely want to contribute from participating.

Admins and moderators who regularly host voice channel events and have servers with many members create “afk” channels instead.

During these events, they set time limits on “afk” participants and then move them from the active to the “afk” channel. This frees up their spots for online users ready to contribute to the channel’s event or topic.

If you’re an admin or moderator with an active server, consider creating an “afk” channel for inactive participants. This helps you keep the event engaging and allows you to give members equal chances to participate.

When creating an “afk” channel, set a reasonable time limit for dumping members to the “afk” channel. Usually, a 15-30-minute timeline is sufficient.

Remember, you must offer members enough flexibility to attend to specific issues even when engaging in a Discord in-voice channel event. Any timeline below 15 minutes is too stringent and can be unfair to members.

It’s also essential to notify server members of the “afk” channel and the set time limit.

Besides voice channels, Discord users also use “afk” in other contexts.

For example, suppose server members are streaming a game. If a specific player is unavailable for a particular period, another can inquire about their status by asking, ‘Has @username gone afk in the middle of a fight?

After the inactive member returns online, he can clarify whether he was afk.


“Afk” on Discord means “away from keyboard.” This term is used to notify other users of your unavailability for a specific period.

Discord users use the term “afk” when streaming, chatting, during voice channel events, and in different contexts.

Servers that host regular voice channel events sometimes create “afk” channels where they dump members who have been inactive in the channel for a set timeline.

You can also use “afk” during regular messaging with your friends, as the term’s application is the same.

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