What does Netflix and chill mean?

TV and movie streaming platform Netflix enjoyed a spectacular boom at the start of the year when everyone was confined to their homes due to the coronavirus lockdown.

Increased user numbers meant more and more people using the popular phrase 'Netflix and chill' – while millions of others have been left asking what on earth it means.

What does Netflix and chill mean?

The internet slang term is a euphemism for having sex.

If someone asks, 'do you want to Netflix and chill?', what they are really asking is 'do you want to have sex?'.

It can refer to two people in a romantic relationship but is more commonly used to reference a casual, and likely fleeting, encounter.

The phrase is now a part of Millennial and Gen Z lexicon and it has even been used by countless companies as part of ad campaigns.

In 2015 a line of 'Netflix and chill' condoms hit the market while earlier this year Ben & Jerry's announced a new ice cream flavour – 'Netflix & Chill'd'.

It has become so established that Netflix themselves acknowledged the term in 2015, when they unveiled something called 'The Switch'.

They said that when pushed the lights in the user's room would dim, their phone would enter 'do not disturb mode' and the streaming platform would launch.

In the same year the Netflix logo outside their California HQ was graffitied by vandals who added the words 'and chill underneath'.

A year later the company carried out a survey on how people in relationships use the platform, which they called the 'Netflix and chill study'.

Where did the term come from?

According to internet historians the term 'Netflix and chill' was first coined on January 21, 2009, on Twitter by an American with the online username 'NoFaceNina'.

The now-famous slang term was born when they posted an update saying: "I'm about to log onto Netflix and chill for the rest of the night."

The phrase was used innocently and without any sexual connotations for a number of years by TV and movie buffs who simply wanted to relax in front of the telly.

In fact, most of the time it was used by people who were watching on their own.

However, as the streaming platform rapidly gained new subscribers usage of the word 'Netflix' changed.

It is first thought to have been combined with the word 'chill' in a euphemistic way in 2014, which is when the slang term really took off, mainly on the internet.

In 2015 a definition of the phrase was added to the Urban Dictionary, which is an online dictionary of slang words and phrases such as 'YOLO' and 'ghosting someone'.

According to Urban Dictionary, 'Netflix and chill' means: 'Something you tell your parents when you want your boyfriend/girlfriend to come over and you f**k.'

What are some of the best memes?

The popularity of the 'Netflix and chill' phrase has resulted in thousands of hilarious memes being posted online, here are a few of the best.

In this one Bender from the Futurama TV show can be seen asking whether or not he should expect to actually watch Netflix or not.

This meme shows a sad-looking Kanye West lamenting the fact he can't get in on the joke because no one wants to 'chill' with him.

Here, DW from kid's TV show Arthur can be seen asking why she was invited over to 'Netflix and chill' when he doesn't even have a television.

And this much-memed image shows Boromir from Lord of the Rings (portrayed by Sean Bean) getting in on the "Netflix and chill" humour.

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