Why do government acronyms matter? Acronyms are abbreviations of names, frequently the first letter of each word in a name. In government, names are often long, so acronyms are commonly used. And, in discussions on television, radio and other media, as well as in public meetings and casual conversations, people often use acronyms for efficiency’s sake, assuming that everyone knows what the acronyms mean. Thus, it makes sense for individuals to know the meaning of common acronyms in order to better understand what is being discussed. This is perhaps no truer than with government, which has such a large impact on people’s lives, for better or worse. The following quiz introduces readers to five important organizations within the U.S. government and their corresponding acronyms.