pp. Leaving a party, event, or group surreptitiously or without saying goodbye; leaving a relationship without breaking it off or by slowly reducing contact with the other person.
Other Forms
It was not long ago that Sean Penn and Charlize Theron were a happy couple: appearing together at fashion shows and film festivals, hugging on the beach. Recently, though, it was reported that Ms. Theron had stopped responding to Mr. Penn’s calls and text messages. She was “ghosting” him.
—Valeriya Safronova, “Exes Explain Ghosting, the Ultimate Silent Treatment,” The New York Times, June 26, 2015
Ghosting apparently refers to leaving a social gathering without saying goodbye. Like a ghost. Geddit? Other party goers might wonder where you went, but are mostly unfazed by your departure and it usually happens when you are too drunk to say a proper goodbye or you don't want to interrupt the host and make other guests take it as a cue to leave and thus kill the party.
—Ana Samways, “July 9: Enrique's in the frame,” The New Zealand Herald, July 09, 2013
Ghosting — aka the Irish goodbye, the French exit, and any number of other vaguely ethnophobic terms — refers to leaving a social gathering without saying your farewells. One moment you’re at the bar, or the house party, or the Sunday morning wedding brunch. The next moment you’re gone. In the manner of a ghost.
—Seth Stevenson, “Don't Say Goodbye,” Slate, July 03, 2013
2004 (earliest)
To disappear without anyone noticing at first. Usually done while in large groups.
—Xaq Webb, “Ghosting,” Urban Dictionary, December 03, 2004