Social media terminology: Troll, hater, meme...

Social media can be a minefield to navigate. Especially in a second language. There are always new terms to keep up with and other people are never afraid to point out things that are wrong. Don’t fear, though. Make sure you know these simple pieces of English social media vocabulary so you can have fun in English with social media.

1. To go viral

When something is popular and spreads quickly, we can say it has ‘gone viral’. When a real virus spreads through people or computers, it’s a bad thing, however when a piece of social media content goes viral, it’s usually positive.

2. Troll

You may be familiar with trolls in kid’s stories that live under bridges. In social media, a troll is a person who deliberately starts arguments in the comments sections of sites. Often they don’t even believe in what they are arguing for, they just do it because they enjoy it.

3. Hater

Another negative personality in social media, a hater is someone who voices negative opinions about other people. It might be inspired by jealousy or boredom. The advice is usually to just ignore them.

4. Vlogger

Blogs have been around for a while (as readers of this one will know). Now that video equipment is cheaper than ever, lots of people have turned to blogging through video instead of writing, this is vlogging. Top vloggers often have millions of fans and get more views than many shows on regular TV.

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Blogger typing

5. Meme

You know those funny pictures with text on them? Those are memes. They are a fun way to make people laugh and often end up going viral. Why not try making your own about learning English.

6. Mash-up

Take the best parts of one thing, combine them with another, and you have a mash-up. Whether it’s comic characters from different comics or combining parts of two different music tracks, mash-ups are an interesting way to create something new out of what is already there.

7. The blogosphere

When the newspapers and TV are talking about an issue, people often say it’s ‘in the media’. When lots of bloggers are talking about it, it’s ‘in the blogosphere’.

8. AMA

Standing for ‘ask me anything’, these sessions started on Reddit but are now common elsewhere on social media. An ‘ask me anything’ session is when a person agrees to answer all questions that people ask them. It’s a great way for people to share knowledge and connect with their fans.

9. Clickbait

Those articles that people sometimes share on social media with titles like ‘I started writing an article about English, you won’t believe what happened next…!’ are called clickbait. They have headlines that make you want to click through and read. The articles themselves often don’t live up to expectations, though.

So, do you have experience with any of these words? If so, explain in the comments below. Do you you have any other interesting English social media vocabulary you’ve seen? Get social and let us know about it!

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