What Popular Digital Slang Do You Remember From the Dawn of the Internet Age? Here’s What People Said.

I remember when the Internet was pretty new and my mind was already blown.

You’re trying to tell me you can talk to another person in another country who you’ve never met before in something called a “chat room”?

Well, now I’ve seen it all!

Do you remember the good old days?

AskReddit users talked about digital slang terms from the early days of the Internet.

Let’s take a look.

1. Saw it all the time.

“”This site is under construction” = ‘Oh, spinning animated construction signs!

That’ll make up for my half-a**ed attempt at an Evangelion fan page!”

2. BRB!

“There were a bunch of variations basically for “There’s a parent in the room, act cool!”.

I don’t remember any of them now.

I still love BRB!”

3. It was romantic.

“The term World Wide Web still sounds quite romantic to me.

It fills me with nostalgia for the idea that connecting with the rest of the world was this exciting thing.

A similar feeling to looking up at airplanes and wondering where they’re going.”

4. Time to surf.

“”Surfing the net”

I never understood where the whole ocean metaphor for the internet came from…”


“Warning: this site uses frames.

We had a website that we used at work that used frames that we only got rid of last year.

The replacement has about as many things it does better as it does worse, but at least we’re rid of frames.”

6. I don’t remember this one…

“”Sneaker net,” or the physical transfer of files via drives and disks, has always been a personal favorite.”

7. Be careful…


Parents Are Watching.”

8. Nerd alert!

“On a BBS ( bulletin board service) you could play rpgs with others called a MUD ( multi user dungeon).”

9. See you later.

“”Everyone who likes Michael Jackson press Alt+F4 now!”

Michael Jackson was alive and well at the time

This was done in chat rooms on AOL and other places, where you could see a list of all the users currently in the group.

Alt+F4 is the Windows shortcut to close the currently active window.

So it was a fun way to watch a bunch of people suddenly drop off the list because they unknowingly exited the room.”

10. Primitive emojis.

“Here, have some pop tarts [:::] [:::]

Or pretzels &&&&& Or maybe some M&Ms? (m) (m) (m) A beer (_)3 if you were pretending to be older than you were.

Slices of pizza <) <) <).”

11. All kinds of good stuff.

“Most webpages had a counter that would tell you how many people had been on the page.

All the “cool” computer people were “hackers.” Everyone had a bunch of MIDI files for their Geocities or Angelfire webpage. TTFN (ta ta for now). Pwned (came a little later). Meticulously crafting AIM “away messages.” Calling a hyperlink a “hot link.” “You’ve got mail.”

Having to look through a webpage’s “index” or “directory.” Using “chat rooms” and AOL “channels.” “Web browser.” “The interwebs.” “Surfin’ the net.” “Defragging” Signing people’s “Guestbook” on their site. “Ask Jeeves.” Kiosk services. “Sorry, I timed out.””

12. Check it out.

“You can watch the movie Hackers and see all the old lingo in use.

God, that film was hilarious even back then. It’s a classic and I love it.

Roller blading web vigilantes hacking the mainframe with floppy disks.”

We want more!

If you remember any slang terms from the early days of the Internet, please share them with us in the comments.

Thanks in advance!