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

  • noun A relationship between two organisms of different species in which one is a parasite and the other is a host.
  • noun The characteristic behavior or mode of existence of a parasite or parasitic population.
  • noun Parasitosis.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A habitual living on or at the expense of another; parasitic condition, tendency, or habits; a state of dependency on the favor or good offices of another.
  • noun Specifically In zoology and botany, the vital relation which a parasite bears to its host; parasitic infestation.

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

  • noun The state or behavior of a parasite; the act of a parasite.
  • noun (Bot. & Zoöl.) The state of being parasitic.

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

  • noun ecology Interaction between two organisms, in which one organism (the parasite) benefits and the other (the host) is harmed.
  • noun figuratively A similar interaction between people.

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

  • noun the relation between two different kinds of organisms in which one receives benefits from the other by causing damage to it (usually not fatal damage)


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From parasite +‎ -ism.


  • IMO, passerine parasitism is mainly due to their altricial nature.

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  • Rubin doesn't have one particular business model in mind, but he borrows from biology to frame the issue as a choice between "parasitism" - an "information wants to be free" approach where content platform owners strip publishers of control over their content-and "mutualism" - a

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  • By the same token, maybe few people actively disagree with the notion that parasitism is bad, but neither is the denunciation of parasitism – especially on the part of what are essentially a class of poor scavengers – a theme you’ll find in film quite as often as a generic praise of individuality.

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  • If this be the case the parasitism is the reverse of that which occurs in Cuscuta, in which the plantule draws its first nourishment from the earth, relinquishing this when sufficiently developed to enable it to draw its supply from other plants.

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  • Secondly, however, there's the issue of what might be called parasitism: In the recent exploit, attackers used compromised FTP servers to further distribute the Zeus trojan.

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  • In February 1964, Brodsky was arrested on charges of "parasitism," that is, not working in any of the branches of "socialist economy."

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  • In more recent versions there is provision for an operation called “injection” which generates a kind of parasitism:

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  • They pride themselves upon the parasitism which is their shame.

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  • I don't think most of what Google does in that regard could be described as parasitism or piracy. " The Motley Fool

  • The industrial capitalists, then, have very motive to put an end to this kind of parasitism, and to use the funds secured, through confiscatory taxation of the unearned increment of land, to lessen their own taxation, to nationalize those fundamental industries that can only be made in this way to subserve the interests of the capitalist class as a whole (instead of some part of it merely), and to undertake through government those costly enterprises which are needed by all industry, but which give too slow returns to attract the capitalist investor.

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