chat or chatting

A form of interactive online communication that enables users to have real-time conversations with other people who are also online.

Chatting on the Internet can take place via Web sites, in areas known as chat rooms, via instant messaging, on IRC channels, smartphones, video conferencing, vidchat, and more. In any case, when participating in a chat discussion, your messages are instantaneously relayed to other people and their messages are instantaneously relayed to you, no matter where in the world you or the other people happen to be.

It's quite simple: You type a sentence, then someone else types, and both of you can see the full dialogue on the screen. Next-generation chat technology includes voice chat (communication via audio instead of text transmission) and customer support chat (where users log on to talk to customer support representatives).

Historical perspective: A free chat service popular with teen gamers has turned into a “virtual Lord of the Flies,” according to The Wall Street Journal. "Discord" debuted in 2015 offering streams of real-time, around-the-clock conversation for the up-all-night culture of gaming. In 2019, it has more than 250 million registered users. Said one parent, “These kids aren’t calling, texting, or Skyping each other anymore. They’re all just Discording.” But when you funnel that many anonymously registered teens into the same channels, with a near total lack of rules, it can quickly turn ugly amounting to racist memes, vulgar talk, and cyberbullying.

NetLingo Classification: Online Jargon