Obliged to communicate using ASCII text, MUD players have developed a series of conventions. Many of these extend across all comms communities, such as using smiley faces (like ':-)'), abbreviating common phrases (eg. 'by the way' as 'BTW'), and placing certain emotional flags in angle brackets ('<g>' = 'grin'). These will not be discussed here, as they're part of on-line culture in general. However, it should be noted that they're much less frequent in MUD than in, say, CB programs, as the community of MUD players is smaller and more tightly knit, with game-related jargon preferred.

MUD players tend to type a lot, and they therefore use lower case most of the time so they needn't keep hitting the shift keys. Although standard written English use of capitals is OK, eg. for proper nouns or the beginning of a sentence, anything else in upper case is definitely assumed to be there for a reason, generally being one of the following:

(a) A command. Since some commands have quotes in them, it can be confusing to use them when telling someone how to do something, so upper case is preferred instead; upper case itself can therefore be seen as a form of quoting when used in this fashion. "Try G T instead of GET TREASURE". In this context, the creation of participles is done non-destructively (in direct disregard of common English practice) to make it clear that what's being said is a MUD command, eg. "Try SLIDEing it".

(b) A minimum abbreviation. Many words in MUD can be shortened to a few key letters, and when explaining a command it is often the case that the letters comprising the abbreviation are capitalised leaving the rest in lower case. "If you can't spell her name, use the SYNonymise command". MUD itself uses this convention, and even (a) when it's unavoidable.

(c) An acronym. There is some inconsistency here, with many people leaving well-known acronyms in lower case. However, acronyms are more commonly fully capitalised when extended somehow. "I was FODded for no good reason! No more MUDding for me until someone apologises".

(d) For emphasis. "You told him WHAT?!",

(e) A player, as opposed to a persona. If you don't know their real name (or whoever you're talking to doesn't), capitalising a persona name is taken to mean the player behind it. Player names can also be fully capitalised, though. "I was jumped by Flobble last night, I think it's ANCHOVY seeking revenge".

(f) A mistake. Someone hit the caps lock and didn't notice. It's polite to inform them of this, or to apologise if you do it and notice yourself. "So when I HEARD THIS I SAID oops caps lock that he was a selfish toad".

Note that because printed text can use boldface and italics, this dictionary does not itself adhere to these conventions except when giving quoted examples of actual usage during the process of definition.