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15 Internet Slang Terms Parents Need To Know

Internet slang seems to change almost daily; how can a parent keep up? To help, we’ve rounded up some common terms and practices that you might see popping up in your kids’ chats online and IRL (in real life).


Get this list as a PDF download plus lots of other helpful resources by requesting a free Family Tech Talk Virtual Edition event planning kit. The kit includes a step-by-step planning guide and tools to promote your event, plus access to an expert from Trend Micro to host the virtual presentation and answer questions!



A hashtag used to identify (and often glorify) posts about self-harm habits, such as cutting and burning; users also share tricks on how to keep these behaviors hidden.



“Before anyone else”; a term of affection for a significant other or crush.


burn note

A message that gets erased after a set period of time.



Using a fake profile or pretending to be someone else (or both) to get a target to share personal information or become romantically involved.


cook session

When a group of people gang up on someone else via social media.

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Awkward, cringe-inducing photos; these can be used as blackmail and/or be uploaded to public forums.



A secondary Instagram account, often set up under an alias, for posts someone wants only a small group of friends (and often, not parents) to see. “Finsta” comes from “fake Instagram”; “rinsta” is used to describe a "real Instagram” account.



Sending angry, rude, or obscene messages to a person, either publicly or privately.



When someone cuts off communication with another person without an explanation. Can apply to phone calls, texting, email, and social media.


happy slapping

An extreme form of bullying; physical assaults are recorded, then sent to others or posted online.



A term for a person who’s new to a multiplayer online game or other Internet activity and doesn’t know how to use it well. Also spelled newb, n00b, nob, noob, or nub.


rage quitting

When a gamer quits after an angry scene directed at other players; it often results from being purposely provoked by the other players.



Using sexual images to blackmail, humiliate, or get revenge on someone.


text bombing

Sending a large number of text messages to a person at one time so that they can’t use their device.



Someone who deliberately makes an inflammatory post or purposely shares misleading information to get other people to respond emotionally.


Give parents at your school a PDF of this list plus lots of other helpful resources with a free Family Tech Talk Virtual Edition event. Family Tech Talk is a great way for PTOs and PTAs to help parents learn how to keep their kids safe online and practice digital citizenship. Best of all, an expert from Trend Micro will host the presentation and answer questions! The planning kit includes a step-by-step planning guide and tools to promote your event.

Adapted from dictionaries of Internet acronyms and terms compiled by the Cyberbullying Research Center and Common Sense Education. Family Tech Talk™ and Family Tech Talk Virtual Edition™ are trademarks of School Family Media®.

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