You want that beautiful red dress you saw on this Facebook group just now. So, you proceed to state the same in the comments. The seller replies back with “nil”. Huh? What does that mean now? Can you buy the dress or not?
On Facebook, “nil” means “next in line” in buy/sell groups. Also, it can mean “nothing or zero” in other contexts. Finally, it can stand for “forbidding to eat or drink” in a health-related group.
Here you will find further details about the meaning of “nil”, along with examples.
The Meaning of “Nil” on Facebook
When someone comments “nil” on Facebook, it can mean either of the three things:
- Nothing or zero
- Next in line
Let’s take a look at each of these meanings for better understanding.
#1 Nothing or zero
In this case, the word “nil” is used as a contraction of “nihil” (Latin), which means nothing or zero. Though “nil” is a pretty common term, it is more popularly used in Britain than in the USA. You might have an American use the term “nil” when there is no score in a football match, whereas a Britisher would use it more commonly for tennis scores.
Here’s showing you how to use the word “nil” in everyday conversations for better understanding:
- Friend: Did you watch the Chelsea match last night? What’s their score?
- You: They scored nil.
#2 Next in Line
Buy and Sell groups on Facebook have a host of acronyms of their own. If you are unaware of these acronyms, you might miss out on a major buying or selling opportunity. Maybe you will end up selling the product to someone who is not even next in line!
So, maybe someone has already replied that they are interested in the item you are selling. The following person who replies asking for that item is “nil” (Next in Line). If the first person does not take the product, it goes to the one who is “nil”.
- Buyer: I would like to buy this red cotton dress.
- You: NIL
#3 Forbidding To Eat or Drink Anything
If you are a part of some medical or health-related groups on Facebook, you might have heard the term “nil by mouth”, which means forbidding eating or drinking anything. This is typically a part of a doctor’s instructions before surgery and is commonly used in Britain.
Example instructions for appendectomy patients:
- sign the consent form understanding the risks of the surgery
- nil by mouth for eight hours before surgery
- remove all your jewelry before coming to the operating room
So, the three most common meanings of nil are now clear to you. It is up to you now to understand the meaning in the context of the ongoing conversation.
Frequently Asked Questions
It is typically used in buy/sell groups and stands for “brand new with tags”. It means the seller is offering a brand new product with the tags still intact.
An easy way to start is by becoming a part of a Facebook buy/sell group. Make sure to choose a group relevant to what you plan to sell.