back·​mask·​ing ˈbak-ˌma-skiŋ How to pronounce backmasking (audio)
plural backmaskings
: the encoding of audio materials (such as words conveying a secret message) on a recording in such a way that they can only be heard and understood when the recording is played backwards
Of the new bills, Rhode Island's is unique in that it calls for several different labels, including one that says "parental warning: this record contains backmasking that makes a verbal statement when this program is played backwards" …Richard Harrington, Washington Post, 14 Mar. 1990

called also backward masking

Word History

First Known Use

1982, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of backmasking was in 1982

Love words?

You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

Dictionary Entries Near backmasking

Cite this Entry

“Backmasking.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Jul. 2024.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!