Difference between revisions of "Common Jargon"

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m (Common Abbreviations: TT)
(Technical: TT has up to 99.5% fewer Elder Gods per 1000 lines of code than BML! Now confirmed!)
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; TheSchwartz: An asynchronous job scheduling engine of the "Do this and tell me later" type. Has persistent queue support. It was named after Brad's manager, Mike Schwartz, the VP of Engineering at Six Apart, and may also have been a reference to Spaceballs (with Brad you never know). Solid, has a lot of overhead and a lot of setup. [http://azurelunatic.dreamwidth.org/6323528.html IRC log with history/discussion] [[Production_Notes#TheSchwartz|TheSchwartz on Dreamwidth]] [http://search.cpan.org/~bradfitz/TheSchwartz-1.07/lib/TheSchwartz.pm TheSchwartz on cpan.org]
; TheSchwartz: An asynchronous job scheduling engine of the "Do this and tell me later" type. Has persistent queue support. It was named after Brad's manager, Mike Schwartz, the VP of Engineering at Six Apart, and may also have been a reference to Spaceballs (with Brad you never know). Solid, has a lot of overhead and a lot of setup. [http://azurelunatic.dreamwidth.org/6323528.html IRC log with history/discussion] [[Production_Notes#TheSchwartz|TheSchwartz on Dreamwidth]] [http://search.cpan.org/~bradfitz/TheSchwartz-1.07/lib/TheSchwartz.pm TheSchwartz on cpan.org]
; TT: The templating system that's replacing BML.  
; Template Toolkit, TT: The templating system that's replacing BML when building site pages; all existing BML pages are planned to eventually be migrated to using TT. Free Open Source Software, 99% less Eldritch Horror. http://template-toolkit.org/
; Upstream: A flag in Dreamwidth's implementation of Bugzilla that is a courtesy to LiveJournal developers, to alert them that a bug inherited from the LiveJournal codebase has been patched. LiveJournal is actively encouraged to pick up patches that have been flagged for upstreaming. Yay Open Source!  
; Upstream: A flag in Dreamwidth's implementation of Bugzilla that is a courtesy to LiveJournal developers, to alert them that a bug inherited from the LiveJournal codebase has been patched. LiveJournal is actively encouraged to pick up patches that have been flagged for upstreaming. Yay Open Source!  

Revision as of 14:40, 10 April 2010

The Dreamwidth project has some jargon in common use that may not be familiar to the general public. While these are not official terms that you should know, or necessarily Dreamwidth-specific, general explanations or definitions may be helpful.



using two platforms, such as both Dreamwidth and LiveJournal (seen in the wild at http://elke-tanzer.dreamwidth.org/1040811.html)
circle, encircle
v. To add someone to your circle (subscription, access, or both).
Deewee, DW, Dth
Abbreviations for Dreamwidth. (Disambiguation: DW is also in common use to refer to the BBC television show Doctor Who.)
dlist, dreamlist
Reading page.
The unofficial mascot of Dreamwidth, a small sleeping cartoon sheep with a thought bubble. There are icons. Also see [info]dreamsheep
Coined by [info]denise and [info]mark, a portmanteau of "dream" + "bandwidth". Note that it is a single word, with an initial capital and no internal capital. (The font in the logo is fanciful and switches mid-word, but the canonical capitalization is one single capital to start with and lower-case the rest of the way.)
Reading page. A contraction of the portmanteau "Dreamroll", formed from "blogroll". Compare LiveJournal's "flist".
dual siteizenship
Maintaining active accounts (for reasonable definitions of "active", like updating, reading people/comms/feeds, commenting) on (at least) two different journaling sites, such as both Dreamwidth and LiveJournal. (A slightly twee Azz-ism melding "dual citizenship" with "website".)
Abbreviation for Dreamwidth. Also used as an abbreviation for the Doctor Who TV show. Disambiguation may be required in some contexts.
Dreamwidth people: people who are friends with you, on Dreamwidth: or Dreamwidth peeps. As you can see, it was a word that started with "dw".
Dreamwidth people; Dreamwidth users who are friendly with each other.
A portmanteau of "dw" + "denizens".
smashing "DW" and "circle" together.
rlist, reading list
Reading page.
Common: "unlock [an entry]": to change the security of an entry from a more restrictive to less restrictive security setting, most often from Access to Public. Rare: "unlock to [a person]": To grant access to a person.

Old Terms from LiveJournal

This is not intended to collect all of the terms in current common use at LJ, but to collect the terms still in use on DW and their application on DW, particularly for those who are unfamiliar with the original LJ terms and environment. For a more complete list of terms likely to be in use at LJ, try the LJ Support wiki list.

When 50 or more comments are made to one entry, comment threads "collapse", showing only the comment's metadata, to fit a large number of comments on the page more neatly, to reduce server strain, and to reduce load time.
empty comment (phenomenon)
Less a term and more a cultural use of comments, sometimes a comment is left that has no text (a non-breaking space or other non-displaying character) or null-content text (an X, or similar). There are several possible meanings.
  • Presence-marker: A signal that the commenter was present and read what you wrote, even if they have nothing to say.
  • Icon says it all: A comment must have text in order to post, but their icon is sufficient to convey their feelings. This is when they have selected a non-default icon.
  • Comment emoticon says it all: One can select from a small range of comment emoticons when creating a comment. Again, a comment must have text in order to post.
  • +1/-1, plus or minus a larger number: Agreement or disagreement, either with the original entry if directly in reply to the entry, or with a commenter, if in reply to a comment.
1) the use of custom security groups to further restrict access to certain entries. When such entries are created, the author often indicates in the entry that access has been restricted using a custom group.
2) the use of a custom reading group to filter one's reading page
Friends list. (Used, variously, of one's reading page, the members of one's access list, and everyone who has you on their reading pages.)
Friends-lock. To lock to one's access list.
(verb) To add to one's circle. (Unknown whether this is used more for adding to read, granting access, or both at once.)
(noun) 1) Someone who one maintains a friendship with. 2) A member of various unspecified parts of one's circle. (Unknown what exact circle relationship this is used most often with.)


accessible, accessibility
Making things (websites, buildings, et cetera) able to be accessed by anyone, including but not limited to people in wheelchairs, people with visual impairments, people with hearing impairments, people with cognitive impairments, and more. The goal here is to make Dreamwidth as accessible as possible. Developers are encouraged to check out [info]dw_accessibility and the Accessibility Wishlist. [info]accessibility_fail is when people do accessibility wrong (or don't do it at all).
backscroll, scrollback, scrool
Things that happened in IRC while someone was connected but not actively watching, often in the context of "What are you guys on about? BRB, reading backscroll." (Common to IRC/chat.)
emphatic/silly form of 'delete'.
verb. Emphatic/silly form of 'ban'.
the game.
A way of organizing the perennial invalid arguments/distraction tactics that come up against a divisive topic (particularly an anti-oppression topic), by collecting all the usual arguments and tactics and arranging them on a bingo card. See: porny presentation bingo, racism bingo, anti-feminist bingo.
"We have bingo": said when any given anti-oppression discussion or commenter to a particular anti-oppression discussion has trotted out a sufficient number of the listed problematic statements.
Gratuitous references to cake are often references to the "cake" motif in Portal, including the Jonathan Coulton song, "Still Alive" (video), that plays during the credits, although they may also refer to the meme "It is delicious cake. You must eat it." (from /b/), or even "MacArthur Park". However, gratuitous references to cake are sometimes merely referring to actual cake; one must not discount cake's innate tastiness.
cat macros
Images of cats with funny captions. Sometimes used as a form of protest and/or mockery. Also referred to as LOLcats. (From the internet.) See I Can Has Cheezburger.
The conscious or unconscious process of destroying and confusing a conversation about productive but uncomfortable topics. Derailing for Dummies
a song that gets stuck in your head. See [info]earworm and [info]earwormhole.
Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, EDS
A group of inherited connective tissue disorders. Also, why people in IRC tend not to freak out too badly when Rahaeli announces she's got another dislocated joint again. Mayo Clinic. Wikipedia.
A general term for a community of people who are fans of things, such as "sports fandom", or "Star Trek fandom". When used without qualification, it often (but not always) refers to Western science fiction and fantasy book and media fandom, or a certain subset of same.
fandom_wank, f_w
fandom_wank is an internet community, currently hosted on JournalFen.net, that collects and discusses reports of "wank" in the greater fandom community. "Wank" includes social trainwrecks and more, and the discussion allows anonymous commenting. Caveat lector: this community discusses social catastrophes anonymously.
A sexual practice that gets mentioned a lot in IRC. Probably more information on it than you wanted. (Inherited habit from LJ Support IRC. [info]burr86 may be to blame.)
game, the
The only winning move is not to play. If you click the link, you may start playing.
gender binary
the concept that all humans neatly fit into biological male or female, or into social masculine and feminine. This is untrue first because of genetic or developmental conditions that do not fit neatly into male or female, second because not everyone identifies with social masculine or feminine (or the standard that a person picks one and only one), and third because some people's physical sex does not match the societal gender presentation they identify most with. (From LGBTQ activism. See Gender on Wikipedia.)
hit points
A means of measuring someone's ability to withstand damage/attack or perform tasks. Notional "hit points" can be regained readily/predictably by a generally-able-bodied/mentally healthy person. Contrast 'spoons'. (By analogy from hit points in gaming.)
Sharing the same brain or thoughts, usually expressed by saying the same thing at the same time. Commonly caused by spending too much time in IRC. (General term, popularized in IRC. That'll get you bees.)
a notable internet hoax involving illness and death.
(the) keys are right next to each other, keys are right etc.
A joke made about typos, generally under one of the following conditions:
1) The keys are, in fact, literally right next to each other on that keyboard layout. (Uncommon.)
2) Browser/phone/other interface autocomplete/autocorrect, or finger/other input autocomplete; so used to typing something that it comes out in situations where it's not entirely appropriate.
3) Something completely weird and out of context with absolutely no reason for it to happen, such as [info]bubba typing "emily" instead of "wireless" (and knowing no-one named Emily at the time): "My emily isn't working."
(Inherited from LJ Support IRC.)
mouse, mice
An anonymous user or users. (A-nonny-mouse.)
A controversial LiveJournal event involving exposed nipples in default userpics. (From LiveJournal.) This is not the Open Source Boob Project.
Open Source Boob Project
Charitably put, a convention social experiment that rather notably did not scale well when proposed to be taken outside of the environment at that particular convention with those particular people. This is not nipplegate. On the Geek Feminism wiki
pastede on yey
very obviously an image manipulation, or some feature that has been very obviously added after the fact and in a particularly horrible way. (From a fandom_wank disaster wherein someone tried to claim an actor was her boyfriend with a "my hed iz pastede on yey" photo.)
To briefly contact someone, generally on their preferred form of short-form contact. This is usually to get their attention prior to longer discussion, or to bring a matter that needs their attention to their attention. In general use in technical circles; this is definition 3 from the Jargon File.
[info]mark has a highlight set up for 'xb95' in IRC. [info]denise prefers AIM, and tends to run silent (invisible status). Department head contact information viewable to other department heads.
1) An advantage or suite of advantages that most members of a non-minority class have as compared to most members of a minority class, often taken for granted by people who have this advantage. (From minority rights activism. More
2) Special access to administrative functions of the Dreamwidth site. See Technical. (Inherited from LiveJournal's terminology for the same special access.)
pumpkin time
The time after which one will turn into a pumpkin. Generally a departure time or a bedtime. (Used in IRC, a reference to the Cinderella story.)
A variant of poker. According to Rah, "Razz is the reason why poker players drink." Rah plays Razz too often.
September, Eternal September
The (constant) influx of people unfamiliar with Usenet/internet basic netiquette, or unfamiliar with the local community's standards for conduct that differ from the internet at large. (The Jargon File, Wikipedia)
Fanfiction involving same-sex attraction, sex, or romance. The most restrictive definition would apply this only to sex/romance between two men who are straight or unspecificed in the source text. N00bs sometimes use it to refer to any sexually explicit fanfiction. (From the fanfictiony parts of fandom.)
snowflake, special snowflake
Someone who demands special treatment based on their unique circumstances, particularly when their circumstances are not unique, or when they believe themselves to be in an extreme circumstance and are unaware that others have surpassed their record. Urban Dictionary definition
"I think so, Brain, but if the plural of mouse is mice, wouldn't the plural of spouse be spice?" From a Pinky and the Brain segment. (In common use in the polyamory community.)
Finite physical/mental/emotional resources, at a level significantly below average ability levels, to handle daily tasks. More: WTF Spoons. (From disability advocacy; term originated from an article on But You Don't Look Sick?.) Compare 'hit points'.
A controversial LiveJournal event, involving the mass-suspension of a number of accounts, and the later unsuspension of most of them. (From LiveJournal.)
Aside from the obvious slang term, this also means any number of social upsets, generally of the sort that generate gossip and upsetness perhaps out of proportion with the actual problem. ("Did you hear about what Bit did to Figment?" "Yeah, talk about wank!")
An addictive dice-rolling game, with a computer that cheats. Can be found in IRC, in #zilch. (If you want to start a game, try recruiting players in #dw.) For all mentions of Zilch, developers take 1d6 hit to productivity.


Common Abbreviations

As Far As I Know
Away From Keyboard
Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works, the other known majority-female Free Open Source Software project besides Dreamwidth.
Support shorthand for the Big Blue Box, also known as the Known Issues box. It can be found on the left-hand side of the main DW Support page. Inherited from LiveJournal Support.
See #Technical.
Big Name Fan. All the conflicting definitions seem to boil down to "a fan who is (very) famous within fandom". (From Western science fiction/fantasy book & media fandom.)
Blinkie Ponie Armie, a gaming guild composed mostly of former and current LiveJournal volunteers. (Crosses over with some current Dreamwidth volunteers.)
In the context of IRC, usually Fey ([info]foxfirefey), rather than the similar emphatic minced oath, which can repeat the letter any number of times, usually from three on up.
For Fuck's Sake
Google Summer of Code. Official GSoC site; Dreamwidth wiki orientation page: [Summer of Code]
I Agree With This Comment
I Don't Know. Sometimes followed by "my bff jill?" in reference to a TV commercial that aired in the US at one point.
If I Recall Correctly
ikr, inorite
I know, right? Often said by members of the Support Triumvirate when expressing agreement.
imo, imho, imao
In My Opinion, In My Humble Opinion, In My Arrogant (or other suitable A-word) Opinion
Not Safe For Work / Not Work-Safe. Content that the average boss/mother-in-law might not appreciate. You can mark an entry as NSFW by setting the Age Restriction to Viewer Discretion Advised, and get warned about NSFW entries by setting your Viewing Adult Content setting to Content Should Be Viewed with Discretion. FAQ (From the internet.)
Original Poster. Usually the author of the entry; used in long comment threads. From message board slang.
Rather than Off The Wall or On The Way, this is likely to mean the Organization for Transformative Works when used in the context of Dreamwidth. They make the Archive of Our Own.
While the OTW's logo, a red arrow bent into a capital O, pointing counter-clockwise, enclosed in a red circle, can at a casual glance and small resolutions be confused with the simplified version of Dreamwidth's logo (a red line spiraling counterclockwise inward), the organizations are separate, with separate operations and leadership. There is some incidental overlap between OTW and Dreamwidth developers and technical support.
In the context of comment threads, this is usually Parent Commenter rather than Personal Computer or Politically Correct. From message board slang.
Rather than an abbreviation for "password", People with Disabilities. From disability advocacy.
A type of fanfiction. Originally, this stood for "Plot? What Plot?", used of short mood pieces, smut without any attempt at a framing plot, or short action sequences without lead-in or resolution. As it is largely used for context-free smut, some readers have back-formed the acronym to stand for "Porn Without Plot".
Request For Comment. See Technical for more information.
Rich Text Editor. See Technical for more information.
Temporarily Able-Bodied: someone who is currently without physical disablity. From disability advocacy.
tl;dr, tl,dr
Too Long, Didn't Read. Usually said as either a joke or an insult. Sometimes "written out" or pronounced as Teal Deer.
Template Toolkit. See Technical for more information.
Work-In-Progress. Often said of a piece of fanfiction that is still being written (especially a piece of fanfiction that is being posted serially as it is being written), but also applies to other projects.
Often "What the Fuck"; on Dreamwidth, also "Watch-Trust-Friend"; see Technical
What You See Is What You Get.
What You See Is Not What You Get, and other joke acronyms at the expense of the Rich Text Editor. What You See Has No Relation To What You Get. What You See Is Only Sometimes What You Get. What You See Just Ate What You Got. And so forth.
Your Mileage May Vary; this is my experience or general experience, but yours may be different. ("your mileage may vary" is a disclaimer from auto commercials)

Other Resources

very large Webopedia list of abbreviations

also very large Netlingo list of abbreviations

Abbreviations.com list of abbreviations


Contrary to the precedent set by things like Gmail, "beta" actually means "we expect that stuff is going to be broken, that's why it's not out of beta yet". (From geek jargon.) (OMG, Gmail is out of beta now!! WHAT IS THE WORLD COMING TO!?)
Descending into increasingly-fine hair-splitting and world-ending pro/con over an issue that's rather small in the grander scheme of the project, particularly in a "push" environment such as e-mail. See Bikeshed. (From the Open Source technical community.)
Blocking Launch
A priority classification status for Dreamwidth bugs. Items that must be fixed before Dreamwidth can be launched/considered out of beta. Features that are listed as blocking launch will not be artificially delayed until the time of launch, but launch cannot happen until all of these are fixed/in place.
A kind of scary language that Brad created to write parts of the site in. Stands for (Brad/Better/Block) Markup Language. Brad's History of BML
A network graphing tool that Mark uses a lot.
Cross-site Authenticated Reading List, the mechanism by which one can read locked entries from friends on other sites. There should be a link to the [info]dw_news entry about this here or something.)
Cross-site Authenticated Reading Page, a previous term for CARL. Discussion.
An exact copy, or a copy that is identical in most major respects. In the context of the Dreamwidth project, this is generally used to refer to other journaling sites based on the LiveJournal code that have not made significant functional alterations to the code. Dreamwidth is not, strictly speaking, a clone of LiveJournal. See: Fork, LJ-based_Services.
Debian is a free operating system that uses the Linux kernel and some GNU operating system tools.
While Debian's logo, a spattered red line spiraling clockwise inward, reminiscent of the Fibonacci spiral, can at a casual glance and small resolutions be confused with the simplified version of Dreamwidth's logo (a smooth red line spiraling counterclockwise inward in a roughly circular shape, derived from Dreamwidth's stylized lower-case D), the organizations are separate. It is unknown how many Dreamwidth-affiliated developers and users prefer or use Debian.
Data that makes [info]foxfirefey very happy. See Data_Sources.
Event-Subscription-Notification, the original development name for what eventually became the inbox/notification system. (From LiveJournal developers.)
FCKEditor, FCKEd, CKEditor
FCKEditor is the open-source WYSIWYG editor used by Dreamwidth and LiveJournal, more familiarly known as the Rich Text Editor, or RTE. The FCKEditor is named for its creator, Frederico Caldeira Knabben. With version 3.0, it was renamed the CKEditor.
Fork, code fork
Like a fork in a road, code that has been taken in a different developmental direction from the main project. In the context of Dreamwidth development, this generally is used to refer to Dreamwidth's relationship to LiveJournal, as Dreamwidth has active development in other directions. Colorful explanation.
An asynchronous job scheduling engine, of the type "do this somewhere else". Benefits: somewhere else, fast. Flaws: currently if it dies jobs are lost (apparently the team that manages it is working on that). Name is an anagram of "manager"; from LiveJournal days. IRC log with history/discussion Gearman on Dreamwidth gearman.org
a screenreader (assistive software for the visually impaired). homepage
Mogile FileSystem, the system that runs behind the userpics, is an anagram of OMG FILES. From LiveJournal development.
A monitoring system used to advise Mark (and IRC) about whether Dreamwidth is functioning properly. See the Support/IRC section for further info.
A way for a website to know that you totally are who you claim to be from that other website over there. An informal explanation. Dreamwidth OpenID FAQ (From LiveJournal; Brad developed it!)
Peterstein, Disco King
The private support category that receives mail sent to the support@ email address. Blame Mark. ;)
Priv, privilege
Access to various special administrative site functions, such as viewing sensitive support requests, viewing screened proposed answers to support requests that other users have left, viewing spam reports, and taking various administrative actions. Privs are granted in a chain of trust that culminates with the site owners; one may be granted the priv to hand out more privs to others. Privs may be restricted by arguments or granted globally (unarged). "What privs do I have?" "Not enough to do your job. I'm granting you some more privs." (Inherited from LiveJournal.) See Privileges.
A way to make syndicated stuff update like greased lightning. From Google (and Brad!); the implementation is courtesy of our good friends in the LJ dev department. Sometimes also called Fred for short.
replicate, cannot replicate, replication
Dreamwidth has two master databases that are supposed to be identical copies of each other. Nagios freaks out when one copy is lagging behind the other. Nagios also cheerfully informs everyone when things are back to normal.
Request For Comment. An invitation for constructive and thorough criticism of the proposed concept. In general use in certain technical communities. Also, one of the founding documents describing standards that the internet attempts to abide by. Examples: RFC 3330 RFC 2324
Rich Text Editor, something that lets you add formatting to text as well as just do plain text. Contrast with HTML editor (plain text, although you can type in HTML formatting manually). LJ's RTE gathered a lot of dislike from LJ volunteers. It is built based on the open source FCKEditor. The LiveJournal and Dreamwidth implementations have a reputation for being (pick your favorite) delicate, buggy, or broken. (From internet in general & LiveJournal.)
an item of assistive technology used primarily by visually impaired users. Screenreaders read text on web pages aloud, allowing users to use websites without seeing them.
An asynchronous job scheduling engine of the "Do this and tell me later" type. Has persistent queue support. It was named after Brad's manager, Mike Schwartz, the VP of Engineering at Six Apart, and may also have been a reference to Spaceballs (with Brad you never know). Solid, has a lot of overhead and a lot of setup. IRC log with history/discussion TheSchwartz on Dreamwidth TheSchwartz on cpan.org
Template Toolkit, TT
The templating system that's replacing BML when building site pages; all existing BML pages are planned to eventually be migrated to using TT. Free Open Source Software, 99% less Eldritch Horror. http://template-toolkit.org/
A flag in Dreamwidth's implementation of Bugzilla that is a courtesy to LiveJournal developers, to alert them that a bug inherited from the LiveJournal codebase has been patched. LiveJournal is actively encouraged to pick up patches that have been flagged for upstreaming. Yay Open Source!
WTF/Project WTF
Rather than "What The Fuck", this is Watch-Trust-Friend(s), the project of splitting LiveJournal's original Friends into Watch/Trust (this eventually became Read/Access). (From LiveJournal development and then Dreamwidth development.)



Mark Smith is one half of the founding team of Dreamwidth. He is also known as [info]xb95.
Denise Paolucci is one half of the founding team of the site. She is known as Rahaeli or rah on IRC. She is also known as D and [info]synecdochic.
Afuna is the first full-time Dreamwidth employee. She answers to [info]Afuna or Fu.
Staff Page
All staff, and most department heads.

Other People

Brad Fitzpatrick is the original creator of LiveJournal. While he is not affiliated with the Dreamwidth project, if someone name-drops "Brad", it's probably him. (However, [info]brad is not him.)
People the owners have worked with/near in the past, partial list
Brad ([info]bradfitz), Brad's Mom, Hachi ([info]hachi), Abe ([info]burr86), Mart ([info]mart), MK, BB, Carrie ([info]coffeechica), Dave "worst username evar" Recordon ([info]daveman692), Tupshin ([info]tupshin), Whitaker ([info]whitaker) (but not Whitaker's Mom).

Fictional or Otherwise Questionable Reality

These individuals, while present in IRC from time to time, are not always inhabiting the same reality as most of the rest of us. Sometimes it's not wise to follow them to their home dimension.

Sometimes present in IRC. See Tiferet's profile for details.
[info]twopointoh & [info]jdn. Fictional character, written by a number of people but usually Rah, sometimes shows up in IRC (as jdn). See Broken Wings and Mezzaine. (Warning: if you commence a scarily literary-crossed-with-lowbrow rant and find yourself losing your capital letters, you may have been channeling jdn. The standard cure is to finish writing the rant.) Not to be confused with [info]jd, who is in IRC as JD or JDC.


Alton Brown anal nachos
Alton Brown's perhaps unnecessarily fussy recipe for nachos. (From IRC. You really had to be there.)
Usually a reference to the Basshunter song "Boten Anna" (YouTube, English lyrics), about an IRC bot named Anna. LJ Support IRC has a support-bot named Anna.
Payments silliness.
A beginning developer. Generally used of developers who are new at development in general, not just new to the project.
Make like a banana in the presence of ice cream and split! (Kat got bored)
A candy bar or a finger that is buttered. Mark branched out into fanfiction. (From IRC.)
bus (non-essential and/or metaphorical, often seen being sent to hEll)
A reference to "hit by a bus" as "unexpected tragedy", and discussions about what would happen if both Mark and Denise were to be hit by a bus at the same time. Operating_Agreement
Camp Permabanned
Where particularly enthusiastic/persistent spammers are sent. (An Azz-ism, and also a joke based on Camp Permafrost from Bujold's Vorkosigan series.)
Short for Support Category. (From LiveJournal support.)
notional staples that are said to keep someone who keeps disconnecting from the server stapled there. (Popular in LJ IRC, and perhaps other places.)
chemla, the
a dance. Not to be confused with Chemla, who is [info]ChemicalLace the volunteer.
If someone in IRC has 'clocktower' after their name, it means they're pretty mad about something. (From LJ Support IRC, an irreverent reference to crazed campus shooters.)
coed(s), invite coed(s)
A deliberate misspelling of 'code', as in 'invite code(s)'. (From LiveJournal.)
Commit-and-Ditch pony
When someone does something that breaks stuff, and leaves everybody else with the mess, they are awarded the Commit-and-Ditch Pony. This can take the form of an actual toy pony, a pony virtual gift, or merely informing the offender that they now hold the pony. (From OpenMoko development, via LiveJournal volunteers.)
Support's private category is powered by this. (Mark started it; Kat continued it.)
Enthusiastic Little Fucker. Said of particularly prolific spammers before they are sent to Camp Permabanned.
football field
Azz is probably looking for her cellphone headset. (Azz lives in a Faraday cage. Azz talks on her cellphone to MissKat a lot.)
LiveJournal's goat mascot.
a more friendly name for PubSubHubbub (see Technical).
fruit loops
Appropriate-answer silliness.
[17:31] * ysobel dies giggling. you know, one of these days I really AM going to have to answer a request with gibberish
[17:31] <MissKat> Even if she's like "and then the pink sparkley ponies will come and delete all your entries and replace them with froot loops!" I figure it's isa and she must know what she's talking about.
[17:31] <domtheknight> OMG PINK SPARKLY PONIES
[17:31] <domtheknight> FRUIT LOOPS
(from IRC)
Usually a reference to a legacy LiveJournal Support bot of that name.
going to the wiki
If you visit http://wiki.dwscoalition.org you see this message before it redirects to http://wiki.dwscoalition.org/notes/Main_Page. It has therefore become customary to announce "Going to the wiki!" in varying stages of capslock upon going to the wiki (to look up something or edit). (Popularized on IRC.)
a technical support question without an answer (or without an answer that has been reviewed and approved by senior support). Green is usually referred to numerically ("How much green?" "10."), which refers to the number of green requests. It can also be referred to in relative terms ("Lots.") or figurative ("Enough to fill a swimming pool!"). The support category "General/Unknown", commonly referred to as "G/Unk", spawned the phrase "green gunk", or "lime slime". (From LiveJournal support, based on the color coding of the Support system's user interface, which shows requests that are awaiting an approved response with a green background in the list of support requests.)
hEll, RWHell, Random Word hEll
An IRC bot in #dreamwidth.
One sends an item to hEll. hEll sneaks out a scaly hand and grabs the item. hEll's depths emit a sudden roar as it expels a previously entered item. Sometimes, hEll's depths continue to roar as it expels a second previously entered item. (Occasionally, hEll will burp and not expel any other items.)
hEll is neither endothermic nor exothermic, but maintains a fairly constant balance of items entered to items ejected. The rumor that hEll is sentient is just that, a rumor. (We hope.)
(Origin story, rough: So someone Rah knew back in the day had a Random Word hEll bot, because someone would leave out words chatting, and the theory was that they all went to Random Word hEll? And then the bot was born, and great hilarity was had by all. And then one day Rah mentioned the bot in #dw, and Sophie got coding, and suddenly there was hEll. And then at the time of the server move, hEll became RWHell.)
kill you in the morning
A Princess Bride reference. What else do you expect from the Dread Pirate Rah-berts?
a support category that has very few requests in it. Wordplay. Support Category = Category = Cat; cat that is very small = kitten. (From LiveJournal support.)
Mart bug death
Someone proposes something tiny and specialized, then Mart (a notable architecture astronaut) generalized it to the abstract case and said "we should do it this way so it can be used for this other stuff", turning it from a five-minute fix to a five-month fix. Then (the death part) whoever came along who could do the five-minute fix, but not the five-month fix, would look at it and go "screw this" and never do it. There were approximately four people who could do the five-month version, so it would never get done, because they had a gazillion five-month projects. (From LiveJournal development, seen in the wild mentioned by [info]mart in '04.)
Assistant or direct report. (I think Rah started saying she had minions, asking for minions to do various tasks, calling people minions, and/or people started calling themselves Rah's minions?)
Mark, Rah, Sarah, and Janine; the Dreamwidth owners and their spice. (DW Support shorthand.) Also, the regular communication sent from Support to MrsJ to get stuff handled that only staff/spice can handle. (Now includes [info]fu too. The 'F' is silent/unwritten.)
If people start calling Mark "Muppet", it's MissKat's fault.
In IRC, nick nagios (now Alertsy after the Freenode server move) is the monitoring bot. Various people will change their nicks to _nagios_ or similar variations to make jokes about the bot. History of the HEY MARK HEY MARK HEY MARK jokes See Technical for more information.
'Help!' spelled backwards. (From LiveJournal Support.)
refers to the secret hiding place of the Triumvirate + pony
Quotes Database, a collection of particularly funny and/or memorable quotes uttered in various Dreamwidth IRC channels. This is maintained by [info]sophie, and also contains quotes from select other channels that previously shared the same server.
refers to a conversation involving Rah ([info]denise). Coined by [info]ysobel
Once upon a time, an underwear designer put a flaming skull on the front and back of a pair of briefs. Assorted #dw and #dw_nsfw people in and around [info]amusing_underwear pointed and laughed. [info]mayerman coined the name, and [info]remark elevated it into a catchphrase.
Speaking of <x>, hello <y>
You may be greeted this way upon entering IRC. Likely as not, <x> has nothing to do with you; it was just the topic the moment before you entered. (This greeting habit was more prevalent in LJ volunteer IRC but still persists.)
teapatty, *|teapatty
Someone making reference to "teapatty" or changing their IRC nick to incorporate "teapatty" is either drunk or pretending not to be. At one point Wyn attempted to say "Not drunk, repeat, not drunk." Unfortunately for them, they were drunk enough that it came out "Not drunk, teapatty, not drunk." (From LiveJournal Support IRC.)
Triumvirate, The
refers to the current support wranglers: [info]Domtheknight (The Bug-Squashing Boots), [info]zarhooie (The Tact Hat) and [info]chemicallace (The All-Purpose Boa). The Triumvirate + Pony is the Triumvirate with the addition of the Froot Loop Pony, also known as [info]ysobel.
A candy bar, or a play on words involving "twixt". Mark branched out into fanfiction. (From IRC.)
wgw, what goes where
A document detailing how (what department and process) handles a support request of any given type. (From LiveJournal support.) What Goes Where
worst username evar
David Recordon [info]daveman692. Refers to a LiveJournal ad for rename tokens that featured his username. (From LJ.)


Dreamwidth IRC does not have very many non-standard emoticons in frequent use. There are occasional discussions where different non-standard emoticons are created, proposed, or used, but these are infrequent, and the same weird emoticon is rarely used twice. For example, [||||||| 8] \o/ might represent a bus and an alarmed pedestrian, but this is rarely seen in actual chat.

User or community
(), @, and <^> are variously used to denote a user or community in text-only environments like IRC.
()xb95 - user; ()omnomnom - community (regular)
@mark - user; @dw_news - community (official); sometimes used for regular communities
<^>lj_support - (usually) LiveJournal community; sometimes used for Dreamwidth community
Surrounding a phrase, can indicate action or emotion, or emphasis: *grin*, *hugs*, "I *really* like it".
<_<, >_>
Eyes looking to the left or right and mouth. Sometimes used to indicate untrustworthiness of a statement ("I have no idea who ate the last piece of cake >_>").
Eyes tightly closed and frown. Disgust, self-deprecation, annoyance.
o/, \o
Head with single (right or left) arm raised (waving, in greeting, or farewell).
Head with two upraised arms: arms in the air cheering (genuine or sarcastic: "I just got a promotion \o/", "my toaster is on fire \o/"); enthusiastic greeting; arms in the air in confusion or panic, arms up over your head in water (drowning).
common typographical error for \o/; (rare) scratching head in confusion.
Arms protecting head, hands clutching head, or bucket on head.
Waving (head with arms raised and motion squiggles) or drowning (head with arms raised and waves of water).
Head with two upraised arms and pompoms: cheering.
Head with two upraised arms and a line of asterisks: running around, either with head on fire, or waving a feather boa. (Inherited from LiveJournal volunteer IRC.)

Other Emoticon Resources

Wikipedia list of emoticons

Other Resources


Fanlore fandom wiki
Fannish type information, in convenient wiki format.
Geek Feminism wiki
A resource for and about women in geek communities.


Jargon File
Many words from a gentler, more precise era of technology, although some are still in use today.
LiveJournal Support jargon
there is some overlap of vocabulary due to the number of volunteers and IRC inhabitants who are former or current LiveJournal volunteers.
Urban Dictionary
Let the reader beware. (Often not safe for work -- or for other things, for that matter.)


Dreamwidth IRC QDB
A collection of quotes from Dreamwidth's IRC channels
Hilarity from around Dreamwidth, after the example of [info]metaquotes
Another QDB.
A much larger, multi-network IRC quotes database. Contains notably uncensored language and potentially offensive content.


the Internet Movie Database, with more information than you knew you needed to know about movies, TV shows, actors, directors, plots, and more.
A user-updated encyclopedia of everything notable in the world. Not generally accepted for academic research, nor updated frequently enough for current events, but good for background reading, general overviews, and a list of preliminary sources for proper research.