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 Catfish on Wikipedia



From cat +‎ fish. Likely so named for its prominent barbels like a cat's whiskers. The verb sense comes from the 2010 documentary Catfish.


catfish ‎(countable and uncountable, plural catfish or catfishes)

  1. Any fish of the order Siluriformes, mainly found in fresh water, lacking scales, and having barbels like whiskers around the mouth.


Derived terms[edit]



catfish ‎(third-person singular simple present catfishes, present participle catfishing, simple past and past participle catfished)

  1. (Internet, slang, transitive) To create a fake online profile to seduce (someone).
    • 2013 January 17, Mary Pilon, “In Te’o Story, Deception Ripped From the Screen”, The New York Times, ISSN 0362-4331:
      Getting catfished is when someone falls for a person online who is not necessarily real. It can involve pictures, phone calls, social media profiles, text messages, e-mails and even phony friends or family members.
    • 2014 January 16, Donald Glover as Troy, “Cooperative Polygraphy”, Community season 5 episode 4, NBC, at 12:17:
      [to Abed] You made a profile for a fake dude and lured her into an online relationship. [to Annie] He's catfishing you.
    • For more examples of usage of this term, see Citations:catfish.