Is there any specific word for a person who is always online on the Internet?
I am just curious to know because staying online is like a profession nowadays.
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I do recognise the alternative netizen, but for me at least that implies much about a person's attitudes to, and active participation in, the emerging global society embodied in the Internet.
My 84-year-old mother, for example, is online for many hours every day playing "solo" online games. She almost never uses the Net for interactive communication in any form (maybe 3 emails a year), so whilst I would call her a nethead, I would not call her a netizen.
Origin: 1960s (in the senses ‘robot’ and ‘cyborg’): from cyber-, on the pattern of astronaut.
‘Some cybernauts said they weren't even clear on Zhao's contribution, but were nonetheless indignant at attempts to sweep under the rug the death of a man who played such an important historical role.’
‘When his connection package arrived, the fledgling cybernaut followed the enclosed instructions to the letter - but to no avail.’
‘Greetings cybernauts this is Vern Tejas with Alpine Ascents' 2003 Mt Everest ascent.’
‘Hey there Mountain Zone cybernauts, this is Vern Tejas with Alpine Ascents Denali expedition known as Dalai Lamas.’
‘Now these grotesque, giant cybernauts shall come face to face with the steadfast resolve of this residual band.’
‘Other news from Camp I, Vernon Tejas reports to all cybernauts out there that the team's pull through the Icefall yesterday was completed in a very timely fashion.’
For example Netizen: A user of the Internet, esp. a habitual or avid one. [NOAD]
If you want some slang you can say: Net abuser: A person who is addicted to the internet. They use it every chance they get. The person googles/searches random information. EX: entertainment, world events, medical conditions. The person uses their blackberry/iphone in class to do assignments, play games.
EDIT: I found other slang terms. One is net rat: A net rat is someone who spends all their time on the internet because they have nothing better to do.
And another one is kind of vulgar and it's net fu**er, which means: A person who spends days on the internet at a time. usually late at night or very early in the morning. [These 3 were taken from UrbanDictionary.com]
Another possible term, depending on the connotation you want, could be net junkie: someone who is addicted to using the internet, who cannot stay away from it for extended periods without visible anxiety and frustration, whose every action is centered around it, etc.
If someone spends 8 hours a day on the internet because it's their job to monitor and moderate online forums, for example, they could be a netizen as mentioned by others. If they then go home and spend 8 more hours on the internet because they don't have any non-internet-based hobbies, they are almost certainly a net junkie.
We used to simply say a person was "connected." Also, an entire magazine was designed and published to serve the needs of a particular class of "cybernetic junkie," or "cyberjunkie," who thought of themselves as more-or-less permanently "Wired." Although these terms perhaps originated in the old BBS forum and Usenet days, and may have somewhat preceded the Internet, there was some temporal overlap and they continue to have some usage today.
Most people to whom such terms, and those in the other answers here, are ascribed do not find the terms, themselves offensive but do strenuously object to the usually strongly negative connotations that often accompany their application!
I'd say that the person would be called a "netizen" :
someone who spends a lot of time using the Internet
Another term would include a
"Digital Native". It refers to an individual whom is born digitally adept and computer literate.
From Wikipedia describing a Digital Native:
The analogy of the digital native was also used by Josh Spear and Aaron Dignan (Spear's business partner in the Manhattan-based agency Undercurrent) who talked about people who were "born digital", first appearing in a series of presentations given by Josh Spear in 2007
A no life.
See the urban dictionary.