What is it called when like minded people agree with and praise each other in a discussion.

For example, three people are discussing on some topic but they agree on everything anyone says. It's a little offensive word. Not sure how offensive since can't remember but offensive for sure. Not sure if that's just a slang.

  • 4
    echo chamber? preaching to the choir?
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 18:38
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    What does "agree with each other praise in a discussion" mean? You seem to have an extra word in there. Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 19:57
  • @LightnessRacesinOrbit I think it's supposed to be "agree with each other's praise in a discussion" Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 23:16
  • @Andrew: Oh, right. Obvious now you say it but I genuinely couldn't figure that out. Commented Sep 7, 2016 at 0:46
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    @Andrew but what does that mean? agree with each other's praise? like, i praise you, you praise me, and we agree that was a good thing to do?
    – abcd
    Commented Sep 7, 2016 at 0:55

9 Answers 9


Circle jerk?

  • (vulgar, slang, figuratively) Any group activity performed for personal gratification.

  • (Internet slang) An online community where a group of people form an echo chamber.

(echo chamber - an insular communication space that is of no interest to outsiders or refuses their input.)


That could be called a "mutual admiration society" where everyone agrees and praises each other which sometimes is counterproductive.

From Wordnik:

n. A group of two or more people, in a workplace or other social environment, who routinely express considerable esteem and support for one another, sometimes to the point of exaggeration or pretense.

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    I suppose if it keeps gaining traction, circle jerk might overtake mutual admiration society in a couple of centuries, but as of right now it's a mere parvenu. Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 21:06
  • Right, @FumbleFingers, not to mention not literally possible by a mixed group, and also not something you'd want to say in front of fellow parishioners or your Granny! :-) Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 22:03
  • You'd know better than me, since jerk [off] = masturbate and jerk = contemptibly foolish person are both primarily AmE usages, not BrE. But do you understand circle jerk as primarily connoting onanists, or stupid people? Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 22:10
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    @FumbleFingers, in AmE, circle jerk is all about the masturbation. A person who is a jerk is not a stupid person but rather an inconsiderate person - like someone who cuts you off in traffic. Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 22:19
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    Ah, right! You mean in the definition I linked to above I should have taken more notice of the or sections where it says: a stupid person or a person who is not well-liked or who treats other people badly. Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 22:37

A less-vulgar alternative than circlejerk is to say that the people are engaging in groupthink.

The first two paragraphs from Wikipedia:

Groupthink is a psychological phenomenon that occurs within a group of people in which the desire for harmony or conformity in the group results in an irrational or dysfunctional decision-making outcome. Group members try to minimize conflict and reach a consensus decision without critical evaluation of alternative viewpoints by actively suppressing dissenting viewpoints, and by isolating themselves from outside influences.

Groupthink requires individuals to avoid raising controversial issues or alternative solutions, and there is loss of individual creativity, uniqueness and independent thinking. The dysfunctional group dynamics of the "ingroup" produces an "illusion of invulnerability" (an inflated certainty that the right decision has been made). Thus the "ingroup" significantly overrates its own abilities in decision-making and significantly underrates the abilities of its opponents (the "outgroup"). Furthermore, groupthink can produce dehumanizing actions against the "outgroup".


Slang and not very classy, but "circle jerk", maybe?


You might be looking for hive mind.

According to the Oxford dictionary:

Hive mind: A notional entity consisting of a large number of people who share their knowledge or opinions with one another, regarded as producing either uncritical conformity or collective intelligence.

This bears the derogatory notes you're looking for without being quite as crude as circle jerk.

  • I don't think hivemind is the word. According to wordnik, they must be linked or somehow look connected. It's way to positive than the word needed (cirle jerk in my case) even if the vulgar part is removed. Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 19:57

I would suggest the word consensus but that's hardly slang or remotely offensive as per the OP and the consensus of opinion can be both positive or negative.

Consensus: general agreement, accord, unity (Google online).

  • What about "towed the line", as in the three of them towed the line in their praise of the singer's performance? Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 18:38

See also: Less vulgar synonyms for "circlejerk"

You might say this group is navel gazing:

self-indulgent or excessive contemplation of oneself or a single issue, at the expense of a wider view.

"he lapsed into his customary navel-gazing"

Here navel means belly button, and it literally means staring into your own belly button. But figuratively it refers to the type of behavior you've described.


You scratch my back and I'll scratch yoursTFD

Fig. You do a favor for me and I'll do a favor for you.; If you do something for me that I cannot do for myself, I will do something for you that you cannot do for yourself.

"I'll grab the box on the top shelf if you will creep under the table and pick up my pen. You scratch my back, and I'll scratch yours."

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    Welcome to ELU. Please take a site tour (english.stackexchange.com/tour). Though a good fit to the question, your answer does not adhere to the standards of this site. Commented Sep 7, 2016 at 10:15
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    Please explain your answer in full. Why does this phrase answer the question? Commented Sep 7, 2016 at 10:38
  • We appreciate the desire to help, but please consider either expanding your answer or deleting it. Questions should be answered as an expert would answer them: comprehensively, with explanation and context. Explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. Unsupported answers may be removed. (more¹) (more²)
    – MetaEd
    Commented Sep 7, 2016 at 15:34

It doesn't mean that they really agree, just that they are sucking up to a powerful leader, but is sychophancy what you're looking for?

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