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Cyber-sinners and ego surfers

A new year brings new terms from the online world

Another year, another set of resolutions.

Recently, however, a new breed of cyber-sins has appeared, making weight-loss plans and dietary endeavours seem positively prehistoric. Here, then, are just a few of the latest Internet-related transgressions:

Ego-surf (verb): Repeatedly checking one’s name and reputation on the Web. As in: “John Smith ego-surfed all afternoon, and couldn’t believe how many hits his name yielded.”

Cyberchondria (noun): Internet-fuelled hypochondria. As in: “After checking several health websites, Ron was sure his headache and dry mouth were signs of rabies (possibly contracted when the bartender’s dog bit him). As it turned out, it was just a case of cyberchondria.”

MyFlake (noun): A person who is addicted to updating and checking their MySpace.com personal Web page. As in: “Jenny paid $500 for a vanity photo shoot to be used on her MySpace page, thereby identifying herself as a MyFlake.”

Blog streaker (noun): A person who reveals inappropriate secrets or personal information on-line. As in: “David’s chat-room revelation of a fondness for Barbie dolls has everyone in the office calling him a blog streaker.”

Wikipediholism (noun): Obsessive updating of the on-line collaborative encyclopaedia. As in: “My name is Simon, and I am a Wikipediholic. Yesterday, for instance, I was up all night revising the ‘Wayne Newton’ entry.”

CrackBerry (noun): A bastardization of “BlackBerry,” applied when compulsive use of the handheld device becomes a problem. As in: “Rhonda was saddened by the loss of her uncle, but became even more upset when she couldn’t check her CrackBerry at his funeral.”

Google-stalk (verb): Snooping on-line on old friends, co-workers or ex-partners. As in: “Cindy Google-stalked until she found the home page of her 12th-grade gym teacher, Mr. Schwarzenegger (no relation).”

Photolurk (verb): Browsing an on-line photo album of someone you don’t know. As in: “Allison thought Doug looked young for his age as she photolurked through his birthday snapshots.”

Cheesepodder (noun): A person who downloads unbearably cheesy songs to their cell phone or MP3 player. As in: “Nigel, a renowned cheesepodder, has all of Night Rider’s greatest hits on his iPod.”

Bandwidth burglar (noun): A person who e-mails excessively large files or photos. As in: “Brad was convicted of bandwidth burglary after sending dozens of high-resolution photos of his pet parrot to his aunt in Albuquerque.”