If you're new to this website—or even if you're not!—there may be moments when you ask yourself, "WTF is going on?" In order to increase traffic, we feel it's important to make this site's host of internet slang terms more accessible to moms. But seriously—in case n00bs are getting confused by our describing people as webtard/fameball/emosoynistic douchecomplexes, here's a handy guide to the terms and insults of Gawker Media. Inside: the difference between a catbag and a cashfan explained.
Balk's Cock: Former editor Alexander Balk's alter-ego, who he often wrote as (but eventually killed on his last day of work.) As Vanessa Grigoriadis wrote in New York magazine, these were "lowbrow posts that generate page views by dialoguing with a character known as 'My Cock.'"
Blue States Lose: Invented by Joey Arak and popularized by Alex Blagg, this erstwhile column captioning photos of partying hipsters and club kids. Example: "Some people think that the little boy from Problem Child and Problem Child 2 dropped off a little or became a crackhead or killed himself or something, but in reality he's just chasing that Big Apple dream."
catbag: Coined by our erstwhile love columnist Tionna T. Smalls, a "catbag" is a woman's intimate region. Ms. Smalls once provided detailed instructions on how to thoroughly wash the area, ending with "your vagina is your center. Always remember that."
commentard: a cluess commenter
Commie: a weekly award for the funniest comments of the week, started by Richard Lawson (aka former commenter Lolcait). Also see "comination"—a nomination for a Commie award.
Emosogynistic: This word was invented by prolific word-coiner and former Gawker editor Emily Gould. She edited it into an early post I wrote! It's perfect to describe boys who act all emo and sensitive but who are actually totes (that's short for "totally"!) not. (Update! Wait! Moe from Jezebel just wrote in, explaining she invented it: "I did, with input apparently from my friend Jessica Pressler of the Daily Intel blog. I was sort of proud.")
Fameball: this term was originated, sadly, by webtard (see definition below) and Vimeo/Collegehumor founder Jakob Lodwick. Fameballs, as Lodwick put it, are "individuals whose fame snowballs because journalists cover what they think other people want them to cover... I believe I am an early-stage Fameball, and nothing I do or say will change my trajectory. I will attempt to use this to my advantage."
Farticle: a story or blog post that is crude, gross, or scatalogical—making everyone feel uncomfortable. Origin: Sheila's Dad.
Femiladyism: a distinct brand of silly fourth-wave feminism; or, misguided feminism. Coined by Emily.
FNFF (Friday Night Fuck Fest): When commenters choose a post to turn into a commenting chatline for the weekend. Drinking in front of the computer and e-flirting may be involved, hence the name. Like actual sex, you cannot engineer or plan a FNFF—it just has to happen naturally.
Fuckjam: any song whose primary use is in the bedroom. Example: large-headed, sensitive singer John Mayer's "Your Body Is a Wonderland." Or anything by Portishead.
Foxymoron: "A sentence that attributes a fictional behavior to a random, often obscure celebrity. The behavior described is often simultaneously undesirable and banal (e.g., 'Sandra Oh chews the caps on all my bic pens.') The form was popularized in a comment thread containing thousands of such sentences posted in response to an article about Foxy Brown that appeared on Gawker in August 2007." Coined by commenter MisterHippity.
JA: Julia Allison—self-promoter extraordinare, New York dating columnist, and former Star talking head. Sad to say, we've written about her (see: fameball) to the point where most commenters don't even feel the need to spell out her name—they don't need to.
Gawker Stalker: Our map where you can send in your celebrity sightings. The phrase was coined by Jamie Rarus, who says, "I coined the term 'Gawker Stalker' when Spiers was running the show there. I sent her an email in your first year, saying how much I loved the site, and that her writing was turning me into a 'Gawker Stalker.'" He also mentions he wants either $1 or a bag of weed for unofficially giving us the rights to the phrase.
How your sausage gets made: Self-referential, behind-the-scenes gossip that you may or may not find interesting. Also see: too insidery.
Jack Ketch: a mysterious person that nobody knows the identity of who executes commenters who have gotten out of hand. He especially hates stupidity and unwarranted remarks about the personal appearance of others!
journalismism: the kind of fuckups, doublespeak, or general idiocy that you only find in journalism.
Listicle: An article broken down into a list. "Five Reasons Why the Meatpacking District Sucks," the <a href="
https://www.gawker.com/tag/not-afraid-to-be-servicey/?i=394577&t=the-top-five-celebrity-cocaine-mistakes">Top Five Celebrity Cocaine Mistakes. Many writers hate writing them because they make them feel dirty and cheap. However, readers ostensibly "love" lists, and our publisher Denton loves them because they are traffic bait.
NewToJezebel: Literally, a former (executed) Jezebel commenter who crazily harassed everyone. Figuratively (as defined by commenter scroll_lock), a "NewToJezebel" is "anyone overly earnest and without a trace of ironic humor."
newsworthy: catchall excuse for running any damned Scientology indoctrination video we want (or gossip item or rumormonger!) Example, from Denton: "Gawker is now hosting a copy of the [Tom Cruise Scientology] video; it's newsworthy; and we will not be removing it." Also known as "fuck you!"
'nilla: We have collectively decided that this is the new slang or a white person. Less offensive that "honky" or "cracker," but with the exact same meaning—a racial slur for white people. Coined by commenter Sarcastro.
Not afraid to be servicey: Magazines tell themselves over and over that they're not afraid to be "servicey," offering up tips on the "Ten Best Butternut Squash Soups in NYC" or helping you "Beat the Heat!" with air-conditioning advice. Sometimes we're servicey by giving away kittens and helping awesome people find $700 apartments.
oversharer: a blogger who crosses the fine, yet distinct, line of writing about your personal life. It's hard to define it exactly. Much like porn, you know it when you see it.
Pageview: Every time you link on the "more" part of a post, a blogger gets their wings—and is paid .005 of a dollar. Pageviews measure both advertising dollars (very important!) as well as our paychecks. Genius capitalist innovation or an evil plot? You decide.
Related: Dentongogery: Publisher Nick Denton's art and practice of explaining (patiently, always patiently) our third-world Catch-22 pay scale, usually online to to reporters, etc. When pushed, he sometimes breaks down and abruptly leaves the office, usually through a window.
Scary Sadshaws: As a takeoff on Sex and the City's Carrie Bradshaw, Emily defined these creatures as "thirtysomething ladies who walk four abreast down cramped sidewalks on their way to drink colorful martinis and muse about their love lives."
Snark break: When we call a time-out from this website's imperative—snark—and post something earnest, heartfelt, or sad. Example: puppies, or this <a href="
https://www.gawker.com/tag/viral/?i=5022971&t=the-ny-times-joins-the-rest-of-the-world-in-loving-goofy-you-tube-dance-video">awesome dancing video.
Shut up, Brooklyn: People in Brooklyn can be so annoying! They always go on and on, in various media outlets, about their kids or their gentrification or how so great their awesome neighborhood is. Shut up! (Coined by commenter TheHonJudgeSmails.) It's a similar phenomenon amongst college kids, as evidenced by our "Shut Up, College" tag.
Transgawkeration: When briefly executed or chimerically fickle commenters return with new screen names and/or avatars.
Example: theobviouschild=SheBlindedMeWithOmniscience=ObviouslyNotOmniscient=LysergicAsset. (Coined by Lisa W.)
Webtard: someone who works—perhaps has made millions, even—in high-tech or the web. However, the webtard remains unable to figure certain things out. They may storm off the Internet like a teen girl forced to leave Livejournal, like millionaire Jakob Lodwick. Or they may be more like Mediabistro's Laurel "Reply-all" Touby—who, despite also having made millions, consistently demonstrates an utter inability to use e-mail.