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'Log' off

"L
og on to [www.whatever.com]," the ads implore.

Who knew you couldn't trust TV commercials as exemplars of correct usage? Logging on to a site implies jumping through the user-name-and-password hoop or some other method of authentication. Another popular ad-speak Internet verb, "click on," falls similarly short. You can click on a link to get to a Web site, but it's not likely that a person responding to a commercial would take that route.

So how do you instruct someone to go to a Web site? There you have it! "Go to" works just fine. "Visit" and the folksy "check out" also present no difficulty. Unfortunately, there really isn't a good technical term for this.

How about "surf to"? Slot reader Peter Hooper, in a note that captured the thoughts above so precisely that one might consider me guilty of plagiarism (until I prove him guilty of hacking into my brain), says that's "at least vague enough to be possible" -- but adds that it's "so 1999."


Now what?

Move on to DOT DOT COM

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