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13 Internet Terms You Probably Didn’t Know Existed

Do you consider yourself a connoisseur of online jargon? Sure, your Klout may be high, but the internet dictionary runs deep. Did you know there's even a term for all the e-mail you sign up to receive but probably never end up reading? Check out some lesser known terms and see how internet savvy you really are!

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The term "graymail" may not ring a bell, but chances are you end up sifting through it daily. On average, about 80% of your inbox is made up of graymail, which consists of the daily deals, social coupons and newsletters you've signed up to receive but don't always want to read. Find out more about graymail here!


randychiu / CC BY http://2.0 / Flickr: randychiu

Aside from one of the greatest talents of our time, "meatloaf" is also a term for something you can find in your inbox. Unlike spam, meatloaf is unsolicited personal e-mail. Meaning, it's circulated by friends or co-workers. Meatloaf can be considered any type of e-mail consisting of jokes, anecdotes, and other trivia that will leave your inbox looking a bit chunky.

Zen Mail

Jason Parker-Burlingham / CC BY-SA http://2.0 / Flickr: nooks / Via

"Zen" mail Is the term to describe e-mail messages that arrive with no text in the message body. Sure, they may be peaceful, but they can also be really annoying.


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You may think Urkel’s been gone since the ‘90s, but he’s actually been in your inbox this whole time. All of those fake virus warnings, urban legends and stock hoaxes that you can't stand sifting through. Yup, there's a word for them. Turklebaum.


Rick McCauley / CC BY-ND http://2.0 / Flickr: artfulone

Are Mom and Dad's constant updates about Aunt Tabatha's prize winning reborn baby doll collection geting a little creepy/annoying? There's a word for those, too. "Fram" is the term used to describe spam mail that is sent to you by your friends or family.


Tony Webster / CC BY-SA http://2.0 / Flickr: diversey

Think Wi-Fi is the end all be all? Think again. Introducing Li-Fi, the transmission of wireless data using LEDs. The new competition to traditional broadband is able to transfer data quicker by varying the intensity of light. And unlike traditional broadband, Li-Fi can also be used in hospitals where the use of radio waves are prohibited. In the future, you can bet Li-Fi will definitely give Wi-Fi a run for its money.

▓▒░ TORLEY ░▒▓ / CC BY-SA http://2.0 / Flickr: torley

The term that is used for a visually noisy or over-designed web-site, usually with too many graphics and too much animation. Just take a look at The Million Dollar Homepage, a perfect example of cornea gumbo at its worst.

16:9clue / CC BY http://2.0 / Flickr: 53255320@N07

Out of all the acronyms that exist on the internet, POTATO might just be the most hilarious. "POTATO" is used to describe people over thirty who act like they are twenty-one online. You can often catch them abbreviating everything and using acronyms like "A/S/L" and "ROTFLMAO".

Social Score

rafael-castillo / CC BY http://2.0 / Flickr: miggslives

Think you're influential? Your social score may say differently. This score is comprised of a person's level of influence among their followers, friends, and postings on social networks such as Twitter and Facebook. You can check your social score with websites such as Klout and then boast to your friends about how your score is higher than theirs. Because what's cooler than a Klout score above 55?


We all know that since his run on The Hills and declaration of bankruptcy, reality star Spencer Pratt now spends his days surfing the web for just about any kind of self-fulfillment he can find. And of course, there's a term for that! Scouring the interweb looking for mentions of your own name is affectionately known as "egosurfing."

Robert Couse-Baker / CC BY http://2.0 / Flickr: 29233640@N07

At one point in our internet existence, we’ve all been the victims of threadjacking. This internet phenomenon occurs when someone steers off the original topic in an email thread, especially on a mailing list, to a completely different (and usually irrelevant) topic.

Peter Kaminski / CC BY http://2.0 / Flickr: peterkaminski

An endearing term for the male developers of your favorite websites. Originating from the movie term "bromance," in which two or more guys have an endearing relationship. Just look at Jack Dorsey and Biz Stone, the two famous brogrammers that changed the social space with Twitter.