As follows are some common and uncommon internet and social media terms along with their definitions. Please feel free to email us if there is something you can’t find or don’t understand and we’ll do our best to help.

Adware – a program that delivers targeted advertising content to users often by gather- ing information from a user’s computer about what that person does online and which websites are visited

Android – mobile operation system (for cell phones) designed by Google

App – a specialized computer program typically downloaded to mobile devices


Capper – a social media user, usually in a video chat forum, who tries to trick other users into exposing themselves

Catfish – someone who uses social media or other online communication to impersonate another. Usually used to create a bogus romantic relationship either to extract money or to embarrass

Checkin – convention which allows social media users to inform other users of their location

Cookie – information written to your hard drive by a website that you visit. A website can use a cookie to recognize you

Cyberbullying – any bullying that takes place using electronic technology, including cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites.


Doxing – The process of internet users exposing the true identity of another user, even though that user had been posting anonymously

DM – direct message – a message sent privately from one Twitter user to another. Two users must both follow each other to send a DM

DoS – denial of service attack. In a DoS attack, the victim’s device or servers are flooded with so much Internet traffic that legitimate users can’t get through


Frape – abbreviation of “Facebook Rape” – when a friend leaves himself logged into his Facebook account, posting content or sending messages that are likely to embarrass


Geolocation – identification of the real-world geographic location of an object using radar, a computer or mobile device via the internet

Geotag – Metadata added to pictures or other media that allows one to identify the location of said media

Grooming – online manipulation, usually by an adult, of a minor with the goal of establishing trust and eventually meeting offline


Hack – the act of altering a computer program, operating system of electronic device to perform functions not intended by the original designer or manufacturer

Hashtag (#) – a label used on Twitter, Google+, Instagram and Facebook to make posts more easily searchable. Can also be added as a humor device


iOS – mobile operation system (for cell phones) designed by Apple. Only available on Apple hardware

IP Address – unique address that identifies where a computer connected to the Internet is located


Jailbreak – a computer hack usually performed on a mobile device, which enables the user to run programs or apps that were not permitted by the device manufacturer or cell phone carrier


Like – a feature on Facebook that allows a user to endorse other users or their content


Malware – short for malicious software – any software installed on a device or website designed to steal money, extract personal information of take over your device

Metadata – data that provides information about other data, such as internet content


Neknomination – a social media/drinking/dare game favored by teens and young adults that has been linked to at least four deaths recently


Phishing – an attempt, by email, text or other communication to install malware on your computer or device for the purposes of stealing money or extracting personal information

Photo sharing – enabling other users to view your photo or video content by transmission via text, email or app or by posting them to a social network or photo hosting site

Pin – an element of content posted to social media network Pinterest

Privacy Policy – part of the terms of use of a social media network or app which states, among other things, how the network may collect and use your personal information


Retweet – on Twitter, reposting a tweet posted by another user. Once a tweet is retweeted, if the original sender deletes the tweet, the retweet will remain online

Revenge Porn – sometimes called involuntary porn – posting nude or sexually suggestive photos or videos of another person to the internet without their permission


Sexting – the act of sending someone sexually explicit messages, photographs or video, usually via cell phone

Share – posting content to social media, usually so that it can be viewed by other users

Skype – internet telephony software and service owned by Microsoft

Social media – websites or online platforms designed to allow users to communicate and share information

Social network – online community of people, often sharing a common interest

Spyware – a software program that monitors your computer usage without your knowledge

Subtweet – a Twitter message sent to or about another Twitter user, without specifically naming that Twitter user. Can be used for bullying or harassment


Tag – In Facebook, tagging someone links your post to that friend’s timeline. The tag may indicate that the friend was at the event or that you are trying to share your post with them

Tor – a service which allows internet users to browse the web anonymously. Tor is often used by individuals engaged in illegal activity

TOS – terms of service – the rules that users of social media sites or apps are subject to, and the list of rights and protections offered them by the platform

Troll – a person who does or says something on the internet or social media with the goal of getting a response (usually anger or frustration) or attention

Tweet – a message sent on social network Twitter


Vaguebooking – posting a deliberately vague message on a social media network that it understood by your friends but not by parents, teachers or other authority figures

Virus – a malicious piece of computer code that can replicate itself

Did we leave anything out? Let us know! Email to add to the list.