from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The return of a portion of the output of a process or system to the input, especially when used to maintain performance or to control a system or process.
  • noun The portion of the output so returned.
  • noun Sound created when a transducer, such as a microphone or the pickup of an electric guitar, picks up sound from a speaker connected to an amplifier and regenerates it back through the amplifier.
  • noun The return of information about the result of a process or activity; evaluative response.
  • noun The process by which a system, often biological or ecological, is modulated, controlled, or changed by the product, output, or response it produces.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun the process in which part of the output of a system is returned to its input.
  • noun response to an inquiry or experiment.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Critical assessment on information produced
  • noun cybernetics, systems The signal that is looped back to control a system within itself.
  • noun The high-pitched howling noise heard when there's a loop between a microphone and a speaker.
  • verb music To generate the high-frequency sound by allowing a speaker to cause vibration of the sound generator of a musical instrument connected by an amplifier to the speaker.
  • verb transitive To provide informational feedback to.
  • verb transitive To convey by means of specialized communications channel.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb submit (information) again to a program or automatic system
  • verb respond to a query or outcome
  • noun response to an inquiry or experiment
  • noun the process in which part of the output of a system is returned to its input in order to regulate its further output


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

feed +‎ back


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word feedback.


  • For the consumer, it's less important that armies of geeks get to play with data clouds and mashing data and getting to flog their widgets than it is to have working systems that really take serious feedback and deliver serious and useable information which simply * has* to start with * acknowledgement of feedback and digesting and mirroring of feedback*.

    A Request to CIO Kundra: Get Bureaucrats Involved in 2009

  • Things that irritate me …. hard to reach anyone at customer service; rules governing feedback should be tightened up and enforced … too many people wait to get feedback from the buyer before giving feedback, and if the feedback is negative, retaliate with bad feedback.

    The Depth of eBay’s Problems 1: Disappointed Buyers - Bits Blog - 2007

  • All systems appear to show evidence of what we label feedback.

    The G.O.D. Experiments Gary E. Schwartz 2006

  • Let us know, your feedback is always important to us.

    Sound Off: Your comments 10/6/09 2009

  • Log stats can give you numbers but the feedback is the human touch.

    How is Blogging Like Stand-up Comedy « Lorelle on WordPress 2006

  • We are working on a new system for blog advertising and the feedback is always useful.

    Berkeley Bloggers Dinner, Jan 26 « Scripting News Annex 2006

  • It's also something I haven't done before, but may be doing more often so the feedback is appreciated.

    November 22nd, 2006 mynxii 2006

  • Citizens control the media and the feedback is at the speed of thought.

    Condé past « BuzzMachine 2005

  • Effective mentoring is about what he calls the "feedback sandwich": Genuinely acknowledge the student's investment of time and energy -- sometimes, that means simply the courage to show up -- offer alternatives, and then suggest getting other feedback. 2012

  • Effective mentoring is about what he calls the "feedback sandwich": Genuinely acknowledge the student's investment of time and energy -- sometimes, that means simply the courage to show up -- offer alternatives, and then suggest getting other feedback. 2012


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  • Dear Prolagus,

    the dinner you just made didn't satisfy me at all.

    Please try to use better tomatoes for your sauce.

    Best regards,


    September 13, 2008

  • Health warning: do not stand between an Italian and ripe tomatoes.

    September 13, 2008

  • Since we can't list profiles, this will have to do. This way to the Feedback account.

    November 20, 2009

  • Is anybody else using the "feedback" tab on the left side of the new Wordnik Preview? It seems like I am the only one asking questions and pointing out problems, which is crazy, since I know many other people should have comments about the new interface.

    November 24, 2011

  • I might get more time later today--I've been traveling for the Thanksgiving holiday and I haven't had much of a chance to play with it yet.

    November 25, 2011

  • Hi Rolig! Only a few folks have access to the preview, which is the only place where you can see the "feedback" tab right now.

    November 25, 2011

  • Three things about the current state of the Wordnik tagging system that I wish were different:

    1. Some tags have dozens and dozens of entries. Currently, Wordnik only displays a certain number of words so tagged, but not all. See words tagged "convowel".

    2. One used to be able to remove a tag from a word they tagged previously. This is no longer the case, and mistakes cannot be corrected.

    3 Not all tags that are more than one word long display the list of words so tagged. See the tag "eight syllables" for an example. I have tagged over 140 words thusly and not a one is displayed when I click on the "eight syllables" tag I created.

    November 27, 2011

  • Oh, thank you hernesheir, those are all good points ... the eight syllables one is fixed in the new site, here's a sneak preview (

    Although it's not showing all 140 words. I've put in a query about that.

    November 28, 2011

  • Once more, for the umpteenth time:

    Some tags in Wordie had comments. When are we getting those back? Will anybody bother telling me something about that, or should I just forget about it and shut up?

    November 28, 2011

  • I don't get this stupid shit about a verification code, so I can't leave my comment on the new official feedback wotzer.

    like so.

    I did in fact try using a null code - can you blame me? - and that didn't work either.

    November 29, 2011

  • I'd like an answer please.

    November 29, 2011

  • I can't hide the "recent lookups" from my profile. I had them off before the newest change, and I think you should keep the previous settings by default.

    November 29, 2011

  • By "can't" I mean that I get an error message. Accessing Wordnik from Dolphin Browser for Pad on a Honeycomb tablet.

    November 29, 2011

  • Congratulations Erin! I am delighted by the information that now appears on our Profile pages.

    November 29, 2011

  • Yeah. I just noticed that the names of all of one's lists can be viewed on a word page regardless of the number of them. Thanks Erin and team.

    November 29, 2011

  • I could only change that preference after connecting from an actual computer (something I can do less and less often nowadays).

    November 29, 2011

  • Accessing all of my lists now takes longer than ever: main page -> click on my name -> click "my profile" -> scroll down to "lists" -> click "all lists".

    November 29, 2011

  • I find it creepy that this site has tracked every word I have ever looked up. I have set it to 'off' and also share with public as 'off' but it still seems to be on. Even if I did want to see them, I'd hardly want them right at the top of the page.

    November 29, 2011

  • By the way, imperfect as it is, this is the first real tangible improvement since the Wordnik era. At last! Congratulations to (whomever? whoever? whatever) is behind it.

    November 29, 2011

  • May I just point out that there was a reason 'Recent Open Lists' was on the Front/Zeitgeist/Community page. It was to foster a spirit of collaboration so that a new open list was quickly noticed and other users to join to contribute to building the list. Either the New Lists column needs to identify which are open and which aren't or we still need 2 columns. And both New Open Lists and New (Restricted) Lists need a link underneath them to All Open Lists and All (Restricted) Lists. I'm not sure restricted is the best term. Perhaps hernesheir might say intestine.

    Also, the Recently Viewed Words was, in the past few months, my favourite feature of the site. Now it's gone.

    November 29, 2011

  • Thanks folks! I'm making tickets for all these requests and comments.

    Prolagus, we'll get those tag-comments back eventually. Tags don't have their own pages now, so it's a matter of figuring out where to put them ...

    November 29, 2011

  • Lists are so much easier to create and populate now!

    November 30, 2011

  • Must one go to a word page to delete words in a list? Cannot this be done within the list itself?

    November 30, 2011

  • you know what would be neat? the ability for users to change the font between a few selections. should be a straightforward css / js situation.

    November 30, 2011

  • disregard my complaint about the font. it was a terrible helvetica i had installed on my system. once i removed it, it fell back to default arial and looks fine.

    my apologies, but i still think the user customizable font type and size is a cool idea.

    November 30, 2011

  • is it faster? ok it is slightly.

    i'd like to customize my profile to ignore all images. then it will be fast. thanks.

    November 30, 2011

  • definitely rockin the site now, but..

    why is the add word input field waay at the bottom of the page on lists? :/ thats an unnecessary hassle to have to nav to the bottom every time.

    December 12, 2011

  • Can't look up cash money -- "500 server error"

    December 14, 2011

  • Thanks oroboros -- seems like a transient error. Cash money should be cash money again now.

    December 14, 2011

  • where are the tag pages??

    December 16, 2011

  • why can i suddenly not find where to start a new list?

    December 23, 2011

  • why can i suddenly not find where to start a new list?

    December 23, 2011

  • nevermind i found it. that was too hard to find! it should also be on the top or bottom of the list page as it is on the word lists themselves!

    plus site's acting rather odd.

    December 23, 2011

  • i suppose i need to clarify, where do i go to a page to see the list of all words tagged 'fun to say'?

    December 24, 2011

  • 'appears on 94 other lists and has 25 comments', it would be great if there was an option to disable the < details >. Because when bulk copying and pasting (and there are different reasons each time) word lists, it's fairly annoying to have to remove each instance of < details >.

    So yeah.

    January 1, 2012

  • This way to the current feedback feature:

    January 6, 2012

  • I hate that feedback tab. You try to put something in and then get bailed-up with a demand to go retrieve a code you didn't request from your email junk. Commentus interruptus.

    January 2, 2013

  • Anyway my suggestion was that it would be useful, occasionally, to be able to select the examples. At the moment they appear in who-knows order. You can get more by clicking the 10 more link at the bottom...another 10 in who-knows order. What if I wanted examples pre-1950? Or from academic writing only? etc. Are there ways we could potentially sort the feed that gets pumped into the examples?

    January 2, 2013

  • hi bilby! Yes, I would love it if we could select the examples. There are some hard questions about sorting/indexing that have to get straightened out. :-(

    January 2, 2013

  • Thank you for the response. The frustration I had yesterday was in trying to find an example of milch that wasn't collocated with cow.

    January 2, 2013

  • Cue 'The high-pitched howling noise'!

    January 2, 2013

  • you guys changed some stuff. I like it!

    August 2, 2013

  • Wait, I can't edit my comments? I don't like it!

    August 2, 2013

  • I'm glad to see the tags have reappeared. I like it!

    August 2, 2013

  • thanks!

    We're hoping to bring back the comment editing soon ... please let us know of anything else you see that's wonky!

    August 2, 2013

  • line breaks in my comments have absconded. por ejemplo, I left a comment on scowlful where I excerpted a poem and separated the lines with hard returns; now it seems to appear as one solid text block.

    August 2, 2013

  • Thank you! I'll use that as a test case for bringing back the breaks ...

    August 2, 2013

  • Thanks for listening! I've just discovered that you seem to have fixed the thing where very large lists wouldn't load—for instance, outcasts loads in ~300ms! I'm ecstatic!

    August 3, 2013

  • the <img> tag doesn't seem to be working in comments. Either that or I'm doing something wrong. See the comment I just put on olinguito.

    August 16, 2013

  • Thanks ry -- it's not you, it's us. I'll add that to the fixit list.

    August 16, 2013

  • I still want a block under "Related Words" that lists other word entries where commenters have linked back to the entry page you're on.

    April 7, 2014

  • Erin - I just discovered all my tags of yesteryears aren't listed under my profile tags. Also, I used to be able to click on a tag and all words so-tagged would appear. What use are tags now? Another thing: trying to access community page displays "bad gateway" and 'give us feedback' and 'need support' links go nowhere!. I notice my lists are described as "open" when they aren't. I'm hoping these bugs are part of the ongoing non-profit project.

    December 18, 2014

  • Hi oroboros! Sorry I missed this. :-(

    The tags page isn't showing all tags right now, but it's on the list to fix. The bad gateway (bad gateway!) is gone, hopefully for good; and I will look at the links now! And the open list bug is also on the list -- luckily it's just the label that is wrong, not the behavior.

    If you have a minute could you let me know the browser and OS you are using? (e.g. Chrome on a Mac, Safari on iPhone)

    December 30, 2014

  • Hi Erin. Just saw this...kind of forgot about it after the first or second check back and not being sure if this was still a viable avenue of comm with you. Thanks for your reply and fixes. I'm using Chrome and Windows 8.1 OS.  I also use Safari on my iPad but not so much; if I notice something there I'll advise here. One other thing: is the "hear" option going to be available on all words eventually? Some words have it, others don't, and some have no action/sound when clicked. "Hear" option notwithstanding, why isn't there a pronunciation guide for words on their respective page? I think it should be there regardless of audio availability. Or is that a can or worms too complicated and huge to re-engineer? Btw, I notice that DuckDuckGo puts wordnik at the top (and with an audio button if the wordnik presentation has one), good show! Neither Google nor Bing show wordnik at all in the first five pages of my cursory look (used 'anagnorisis').  Have a  special arrangement with DuckDuck? :)

    Hope your holidays were stellar. Cheerio  from o. (TK)

    January 12, 2015

  • Thanks oroboros!

    We should have pronunciation help on all words this year -- it's a data conversion issue, but we have new data coming in. :-) Sometimes the "hear" links will time out if the page has been open for a while; reloading the page should work!

    For the "support" and "feedback" links -- they should open a link in your preferred email program. If they don't, your browser may not be configured to open that kind of link.

    And thanks for noticing our DuckDuckGo friends! They have a great search engine and are using our API. :-)

    January 12, 2015