n. The words, idioms, and pecularities of spelling and grammar that are characteristic of online documents and communication.
Perhaps the next great movement in English literature will somehow be fuelled by the new phenomenon of Netspeak, or what linguist David Crystal in his new book Language And The Internet calls 'computer-mediated language.'
—Dusan Petricic, “Netspeak changes how we write,” The Toronto Star, November 24, 2001
"Flaming" is netspeak for crazy rows which blaze out of control for months.
—Helen Fielding, “A non-anorak wearer's guide to The Internet,” The Independent (London), May 29, 1994
1993 (earliest)
Like all arcane entities, the Internet has its own language, sometimes known as NetSpeak.
—Ian Bacon, “Out on the Internet,” MacUser, April 01, 1993
Here are some of the characteristics of Netspeak: inattention to the norms of spelling and grammar; the use of all-lowercase letters; tonal informality; infrequent punctuation; the widespread use of abbreviations and acronyms; turning nouns into verbs.

Filed Under