There is a banner in StackOverflow pointing to the careers website (programmers):

Do you haz teh codez?

My questions about the sentence/question are:

  • What's the question in plain English?
  • Why do they write it like that?
  • Is it like a word game?
  • How should I read it in terms of pronunciation?

    Do you haz teh codez?

  • 7
    It's called lolspeak: speaklolspeak.com
    – Gilead
    Feb 18, 2011 at 17:39
  • I've always felt it was dangerously close to mocking programmers whose English is poor. When we see poor spelling, it's difficult (and dangerous) to judge whether the writer has limited English,or is being careless and thoughtless, or isusing a dialect of English popular among their particular peer group. May 14, 2018 at 16:44
  • I doubt it's intentionally mocking people with poor English skills. My nephew, born and raised in Los Angeles by English speaking parents, well into his mid 20s he rarely wrote a full correct English sentence. I assume he could have but that his culture of friends was of chat for things like MSN Messenger (popular at the time). Also @Gilead link is out of date but this works
    – gman
    Aug 3, 2020 at 6:04

3 Answers 3


Literal translation is "Do you have the code?" but what is implied is "Please can you write my application for me?" or "Please solve my problem so I don't have to put any effort in."

It is written like that as a mockery of people who ask questions on Stack Overflow, and other such websites, where their question is a thinly veiled, or completely unveiled, attempt to get someone to do their work for them. So the questioner won't have even have tried to solve their problem and will possibly be asking for an entire software application to be written.

I'm not sure what you mean by "Is there like a word game?" If you mean is this like a word game then not really, it's just a joke.

It should be pronounced "Do you haz (as in Mazda) teh (as in meh) codes?" and in IPA: /duːjuːhæztɛkəʊdz/.

For an example of the type of thing this is mocking: http://thedailywtf.com/Articles/plz-email-me-teh-codez.aspx

  • 15
    You might be surprised to learn that in some places the first syllable of Mazda rhymes with jazz and in other places it rhymes with ahs (as in “oohs and ahs”)
    – nohat
    Feb 18, 2011 at 17:43
  • 5
    I think it is very wrong to construe this ad as mocking. No, the appeal of the ad, the hook, is that is that it is appealing to a shared culture amongst programmers, who spend alot of the Internet and have been near the genesis of many prominent Internet trends and memes. It's saying, "We [StackOverflow management] KNOW you, we get your culture, we're part of it, so we know the kind of job you're looking for -- take some time and check out this service we're trying to sell."
    – Uticensis
    Feb 18, 2011 at 18:51
  • 11
    @Billare: I disagree. There is no way it can be anything but a send up of the people that ask those type of questions, since that is what the phrase relates to, it doesn't relate to anything else. I agree that the SO guys are trying to tap into the culture of the users of the site. Feb 18, 2011 at 18:56
  • 2
    @nohat I thought that "jazz" and "ahs" rhymed! (I suppose "ahs" might be a bit longer but...)
    – neil
    Feb 18, 2011 at 20:12
  • I think obvious typos are meant to highlight their zero effort spent on even formulating the question, i.e.: "I can't be bothered to check my typos, but you give me the full solution!"
    – zx8754
    Oct 3, 2016 at 10:45

So, to break it down:

haz=have teh=the codez=codes

So it means Do you have the codes? or in a bit more sensible form considering the context Are you able to code? (Code here meaning to write code, or program)

These are variations from internet memes (google lolcats, if you dare) that have become mainstream (usually in a tongue-in-cheek way). I'll stress this is NOT standard English.

Presumably the banner is done that way to catch someone's attention by avoiding a more standard (and therefore less engaging) phrase. It also may indicate that they're more tied into to internet/programming culture which has a history of using intentionally obfuscated terms/spellings/etc. to set them apart and to act as a shibboleth.

As for the pronunciation, you can pretty much just read it phonetically, as the alterations are intended to be applied to the pronunciation as much as the spelling.

  • 8
    I don't think I'd interpret "do you have the codes" as "are you able to code".
    – Marthaª
    Feb 18, 2011 at 17:25
  • 5
    @Martha - because of the context (a link to a jobs section on StackOverflow, a programming website) I'm fairly sure that's what was intended. It can certainly be used in the sense Matt describes, but I'm not sure why a banner ad on a site would be posted to make fun of people using the site.
    – Dusty
    Feb 18, 2011 at 17:35
  • 3
    I think they're poking fun at the users of the site who don't get how it's meant to work, and by doing so attracting the attention of the users who use it in the intended way. They want the users that "get it" to use the careers site, and I would guess they probably don't want those that don't get it to be posting their resumes. It's all supposition until the marketing team weigh in! Feb 18, 2011 at 18:09
  • 3
    I also think it is a funny way of suggesting that upper management and HR who might hire the programmers are the ones who are looking for someone to do their work for them.
    – horatio
    Feb 18, 2011 at 18:22
  • So, any explanation for the downvote?
    – Dusty
    Mar 10, 2011 at 17:32

Sure, it means "do you have the code" ie.

"are you capable of writing quality code (ie, since it's a career ad you're reading, are you a programmer looking for work) and are you geek enough (since it's an ad you're reading, in the positive sense of the word, of course) to understand and like geekish talk like this (which implies that you'd fit a similarly geek company of computer experts well)?"

They write it like that because it's supposed to be cool and to match the target audience's usage.

As for a word game being there - no, there's none imo, apart from the above.

For the pronunciation, go here and click listen. ;) (That's half a joke, sure. But I'm fairly sure the majority of... errr... geeks would get and like it.)

  • 2
    Yes, exactly. It appeals simultaneously to programmers' competitive qualities and their shared culture.
    – Uticensis
    Feb 18, 2011 at 19:04

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