hive mind

\ˈhīv-ˌmīnd \
variants: or less commonly hivemind

Definition of hive mind 

1 : the collective mental activity expressed in the complex, coordinated behavior of a colony of social insects (such as bees or ants) regarded as comparable to a single mind controlling the behavior of an individual organism The tiny bees in a hive are more or less unaware of their colony, but their collective hive mind transcends their small bee minds.— Sven Birkerts and Kevin Kelly

2 : the collective thoughts, ideas, and opinions of a group of people (such as Internet users) regarded as functioning together as a single mind … Mindy Kaling asks her Twitter followers for the best dinner spots in cities she's visiting. Generally, people trust that feedback from the hive mind is correct and well-informed.— Sarah Z. Wexler While the building was being renovated, Jackson and his wife turned the design of the studio kitchen over to the hive mind of the staff.— Mark Healy … It's just not rational to believe that people are able to read, let alone understand, all the privacy policies …. Instead, users now rely on the Internet hivemind to know if a particularly egregious privacy change is afoot.— Andrea Peterson

Examples of hive mind in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But despite the hive mind’s concerns about thirsty farmers, does the public understands that that family farmer avocado groves and big almond orchards also keep urbanization at bay? Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "Farming A Warming Planet: An Interview Nathanael Johnson," 31 May 2018 The roadmaps of tech giants and startups alike show how sound is poised to become the first ubiquitous connection between users and the artificial-intelligence hive mind the internet is becoming. Christopher Mims, WSJ, "All Ears: Always-On Listening Devices Could Soon Be Everywhere," 12 July 2018 If there is a human vs. robot war, the fact that robots have what appears to be a hive mind definitely seems like a bonus. Mehera Bonner, Harper's BAZAAR, "Westworld's Season 2 Premiere Delivered Complete Chaos," 23 Apr. 2018 The hive mind was buzzing, the energy was fast and furious. Tara Shafer, Redbook, "I Lost a Baby at 33 Weeks — Now I'm Fighting to Spare Others the Same Pain," 19 June 2018 During the drought, when the hive mind became convinced that California was about to turn into an anarchic desert hellscape, the sight of all these new trees going in was dissonant. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "Farming A Warming Planet: An Interview Nathanael Johnson," 31 May 2018 Plenty of insects exhibit some sort of hive mind behavior, where complicated behaviors can come from a group of individuals following only a few simple rules. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "These Tiny, Mindless Robots Are More Than the Sum of Their Parts," 16 May 2018 And, friends, the web hive mind is a weird (often funny, sometimes dangerous) place. Angela Watercutter, WIRED, "The WIRED Guide to Memes," 1 Apr. 2018 The point was always just to unhook from the digitized hive mind for a bit — from the faceless online personas that allow me to pose as the best of my intentions while assuming the worst of everyone else’s. Ty Burr,, "A day free of screens (sort of)," 8 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hive mind.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hive mind

1958, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near hive mind


hive bee

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hive mind

hive off



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2 Nov 2018

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The first known use of hive mind was in 1958

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