19 April, 2012  |   16 Comments

New words for internet friends

With the advent of the internet, I now have new relationships with folks — relationships that weren’t around pre-internet.

March 2012

This a very good thing.
I like more, better people.

But for all the words put on the internet, there’s a lack of a working lexicon for and about these relationships.

I’ve started my suggestions for new internet interaction terminology below.
(And I encourage you to add yours in the comments.)

Use: Oh! I’m superfond of her.

The kind of almost love that comes after reading someone’s journal for years and knowing you’re safe around them because they understand where you’re coming from. Not quite love, but darn near close. (Better yet? I don’t have to send them a birthday card in the mail.)

March 2012

South by Soulmate
Use: Of course I sent them a gift for baby number 2, he’s my South by Soulmate.

The kind of friend I met at a conference (any conference, BlogHer, EVO, etc.) once, maybe, in, like, 2006, and haven’t really ever seen again, but thanks to digital media, kept up with their lives, celebrating major life events and even if I never see them again, I would travel to their funeral.

Every day I’m grateful that the most folks I know on the internet I’m both superfond of and they’re my South by Soulmates.

March 2012

Use: He’s totally a nice guy, but I’ve had to keep him feedfree because of his constant political rants.

The constant complainer/ranter/energysucker that you care for, and you want good things to happen to, but just can’t have in your feed. This can be in Twitter, Facebook or any number of places where their information is pushed in your face. I can love someone and have to keep them feedfree at the same time.

March 2012

Use: I’m taking myself out for breakfast and not taking my phone, I will sort out this misinterpridgnation when I get back.

When an audience misunderstands what you were trying to say by focusing on something that you didn’t mean and it doesn’t matter if you defend yourself by this time because they’re only comprehending what they wanted to comprehend.
Also: The most infuriating feeling from this internet.

March 2012

Comment Gardener
Use: I’m going to ask Lou about this, she’s a comment gardner from 2007 that’s been Vegan for years.

A Comment Gardner comments consistently and positively on your site so that that you are now pals. It’s kind of like it took until they were in line with you at the grocery store, complimenting your hair for several days on end until you saw how interesting they were.

This speaks more to the me me me nature of the internet than anything else. Grin.
(Says the biggest fan of comment gardeners).

March 2012

Kind of friend (?)
Use: I’m happy to reach out for you, he’s a Kind of Friend, but I think he’s cool.

Usually delivered with a question mark at the end, this person I recognize by their blog name, and the story behind it, maybe, but certainly don’t know their real name and boom! they’re my kind of friend (/uptalk).

If they become famous, they will graduate to being my “friend” real quick.
Because I’m deep like that.

March 2012

Use: You don’t know what to write on Clarence’s Facebook wall for his birthday today because he’s a Heather-tether from 1995.

A Heather-tether is a person from high school you should remember but don’t and don’t want to unfriend because that call out how mean you are on the inside. Naturally I would never have any Heather-tethers in my friend list, I cherish each and every relationship with everyone from high school ever. I’m just writing this down for a friend. Of course.

March 2012

What new words do you have for the evolving relationships we have with people from the internet?

16 thoughts on “New words for internet friends

  1. 1
    Amy says:

    OMG, I love this little lexicon.

  2. 2
    Mir says:

    I am even MORE superfond of you after reading this.

    I can think of lots of words/needs for words in this context, but none of mine are as positive and cute as yours. 🙂

    • 2.1
      Helen Jane says:


      Sadly, terms like “hate read” and “butt hurt” have become part of the vernacular (groan) but more positive words haven’t.

      Let’s do this!

  3. 3

    What’s a word for the insecurity I feel reading this post wondering which kind of friend, if at all, I am.

    • 3.1
      Helen Jane says:

      THIS IS NOT THE RIGHT TAKEAWAY that I intended.
      Jane, I’m superfond of your face and writing.
      And since I didn’t know you in high school, you’re safe.

  4. 4

    […] Super fun words for the amazing people we meet online. […]

  5. 5
    Tarable says:

    These are incredible! The only phrase I can contribute is an old one used in a new way. I tell people I’m in a mixed marriage because I’m on Twitter and my husband isn’t.

    Thanks for the new vocab!

  6. 6
    nikkiana says:

    I think I’m going to have to start using feedfree.

  7. 7
    Laura B says:

    I love making up new words, but seldom do I manage to spread them to more than one or two folks. These are great. I think at least a few will definitely take off. My faves: feedfree, Heather-tether, and South by soulmate.

  8. 8

    […] Awesome – words to describe relationships made on the net. […]

  9. 9
  10. 10

    […] Super fun words for the amazing people we meet online. […]

  11. 11
    Nell Jean says:

    Fun post!

    We call kind-of-friends, Imaginary Friends. You’ve never seen them, you don’t know their real names and you can only imagine what they’d be like on a long trip in the car but they are so much fun.

  12. 12

    And then there’s your Dave Dave. 😉

Hooray for replies!