It seems unclear when the word “clickbait” was first used. It was officially recognized by Webster’s Dictionary in 2015. Webster’s claims it was first used in 2010 but Gizmodo traces the practice back to 1888.
Language is a living and evolving organism and new words enter our daily vocabulary all the time. Often we use words that we might not fully understand but because they are used so often we are too shy to ask.
Clickbait is such a term.
informal(On the Internet) content whose main purpose is to attract attention and encourage visitors to click on a link to a particular web page: these recent reports of the show’s imminent demise are hyperbolic clickbait [AS MODIFIER]: a clickbait article
Clickbait is a pejorative term describing web content that is aimed at generating online advertising revenue, especially at the expense of quality or accuracy, relying on sensationalist headlines or eye-catching thumbnail pictures to attract click-throughs and to encourage forwarding of the material over online social networks. Clickbait headlines typically aim to exploit the “curiosity gap”, providing just enough information to make the reader curious, but not enough to satisfy their curiosity without clicking through to the linked content.
Clickbait is not to be confused with awesome headlines
Clickbait can be dangerous
Would you like to learn more about a term you see or hear all the time?