1
: relating to, using, or being a network by which computers operated by individuals can share information and resources directly without relying on a dedicated central server (see server sense 6)
In peer-to-peer computing, every client can be a server. You string together two or more computers, and everyone can share files, programs, drives …, printers, and anything else that's attached.Steve Bass
2
: existing or done between peers
In 2010, the Texas National Guard implemented its peer-to-peer counseling initiative, and since then more than 800 National Guard troops have been trained to identify warning signs of mental distress and refer soldiers for more intensive care.Jeremy Schwartz
George Washington's resident advisers are undergraduates who live in student housing so they can have informal, peer-to-peer mentoring relationships with other undergraduates, to whom they serve as role models.Peter Schmidt

Did you know?

The term peer-to-peer is a relatively recent addition to the English language, being little more than a half-century old. In its earliest known uses from the 1960s, it referred to something that occurs directly between human peers, people who are similar in age, grade, or status. It can still be found in this use in phrases such as "peer-to-peer tutoring." With the emergence of computer networking, peer-to-peer began to be used in reference to a system of computers that are able to communicate directly with one another without the mediation of a centralized server. Since the turn of the 21st century, peer-to-peer lending—the borrowing and lending of money through online services—has become increasingly common. You might also encounter peer-to-peer in the techy abbreviated form P2P, as in "P2P networking."

Examples of peer-to-peer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The computer was believed to be accessing a peer-to-peer file sharing network, the warrant affidavit said. Justin Muszynski, Hartford Courant, 12 June 2024 The phone number identity system meant Google had to shut down the previously useful Google Pay website, which could be used for peer-to-peer (P2P) payments, just like Venmo. Ron Amadeo, Ars Technica, 10 June 2024 And then, the crook will quickly close their Venmo or other peer-to-peer payment account. Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, 5 June 2024 According to prosecutors, this is not the first time Anderegg has come into contact with law enforcement over his alleged possession of CSAM via a peer-to-peer network. Gaby Del Valle, The Verge, 21 May 2024 McGovern said scammers may insist on being paid through peer-to-peer payment apps like Cash App. Tanasia Kenney, Miami Herald, 31 May 2024 The peer-to-peer service — where fans swapped catalogs of MP3 song files — walloped the record business. August Brown, Los Angeles Times, 29 May 2024 This is an ad hoc, online-only operation, delivered peer-to-peer, with Harrop functioning as something like an international middleman for poop. Cheri Lucas Rowlands, Longreads, 22 May 2024 When considering the environmental impact, By Rotation’s peer-to-peer fashion rental model proves significantly more sustainable compared to linear and inventory-based models already on the market. Tina Charisma, Essence, 23 May 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'peer-to-peer.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1963, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of peer-to-peer was in 1963

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Dictionary Entries Near peer-to-peer

Cite this Entry

“Peer-to-peer.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/peer-to-peer. Accessed 24 Jun. 2024.

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