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Synonyms: back button, back-button
See also: Don't Like, Don't Read
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The backbutton originally refers to the "back" or "backspace" key on a computer keyboard.

In fandom, to hit the backbutton is to exit a page without finishing reading. The phrase is often used by fans to explain that they decided not to read, or gave up on reading, a piece of fanfiction.

It can be used as a noun or as a verb: to backbutton out or simply to backbutton.

Advice to hit the backbutton is sometimes used in disclaimers to ward off unwanted readers. In certain contexts, it can also be used as a synonym for "Don't Like, Don't Read," as advice to exit a piece of media one doesn't like without saying anything.

Examples of Use

As a Noun

Right now it must be hard to believe or accept that "Misericorde" is a post-GoF story with Sirius as one of its central characters. If not THE central character. Even a few years ago it was enough to make most Snarry maniacs hit the Back button with all possible speed.

morrighan, 2007[1]

Disclaimer: I don't own Bam, Ville or any of these characters, and please if you are these people hit the back button, it will save you from being horrorfied.

sinsrose, 2012[2]

First – we do say a lot nowadays, that fanfiction is free, and if you don’t like a story, then bail out of it, hit the back-button, no harm, no foul.

eregyrn-falls, 2021[3]

As a Verb

you know what the problem w/actually developing taste in fics? the fics you used to read when young, you backbutton out of reaaaaal fast

zeenell, 2010[4]

I actually nearly always backbutton out of a fic if it has the shovel talk.

sophia-sol, 2014[5]

...actually I backbutton out of awful LJ layouts too, so hey.

lian, 2012[6]

Fandom is here to tell you that you can backbutton when you want, but you can also read what you want, even if it’s “bad”.

olderthannetfic, 2016[7]

I was taught never to reveal my asl and to stay in my lane. I learned to backbutton if I saw something that wasn't for me bc this was An Adult Place.

@Amythe3lder, 2019[8]


  1. ^ 'Misericorde' by Fabula Rasa by morrighan_sai, August 3, 2007
  2. ^ Disclaimer on 'Harder to Breathe Part One' by sinsrose, Oct 18, 2012
  3. ^ Tumblr post by eregyrn-falls, May 8, 2021
  4. ^ @zeenell tweet, May 28, 2010.
  5. ^ What is “shovel talk”? response by sophia-sol, posted July 18, 2014.
  6. ^ @lianesque tweet, April 10, 2012.
  7. ^ "You’re totally welcome on my lawn, but I wish you wouldn’t pee on the grass" by olderthannetfic, Dec 29, 2016
  8. ^ @Amythe3lder tweet, Nov 30, 2019