tele·​com·​mute | \ ˈte-li-kə-ˌmyüt How to pronounce telecommute (audio) \
telecommuted; telecommuting; telecommutes

Definition of telecommute

intransitive verb

: to work at home by the use of an electronic linkup with a central office

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Other Words from telecommute

telecommuter noun

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Telecommute derives from the prefix tele-, a descendant of the Greek tele, meaning "far off," and the verb "commute," which arose from the Latin commutare, meaning "to change" or "to exchange." The practice of working at home and interfacing with the office via modem, telephone, or another telecommunications device has only recently become commonplace, but the word telecommute has been around since the mid-1970s. Its earliest documented use can be found in a January 1974 article in The Economist that predicted, "As there is no logical reason why the cost of telecommunication should vary with distance, quite a lot of people by the late 1980s will telecommute daily to their London offices while living on a Pacific island if they want to."

Examples of telecommute in a Sentence

The company now allows some of its employees to telecommute.
Recent Examples on the Web But such measures may be overkill if most workers want to telecommute. Kiera Feldman Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 19 May 2021 But even with these victories, Larian is not sold on a future in which all employees telecommute. Los Angeles Times, 19 May 2021 Both towns are offering to pay up to 50% of the rent of anyone who decides to move and telecommute on a long-term basis. Maureen O'hare, CNN, 15 May 2021 The ability to telecommute allowed Tia Newton to balance four clients as a freelance creative director during the pandemic, which quadrupled her income. John-john Williams Iv,, 11 May 2021 The data suggests what has been suspected for months, that businesses relying on the traffic of tech sector employees saw a decrease in business as tech companies closed their offices and allowed workers to telecommute from home. Chase Difeliciantonio, San Francisco Chronicle, 5 May 2021 These workers can telecommute during the self-quarantine period but cannot return to the office. Geoff Whitmore, Forbes, 19 Apr. 2021 Signings of office leases have been falling for about a year as companies sent employees home to telecommute or laid them off in the face of a sharp economic downturn spurred by the coronavirus. Melody Petersen Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 15 Apr. 2021 Some workers have returned to downtown, but most continue to telecommute and may not work in offices again for months. Jamie Goldberg, oregonlive, 7 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'telecommute.' 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 telecommute

1974, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for telecommute

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The first known use of telecommute was in 1974

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Last Updated

9 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Telecommute.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for telecommute



English Language Learners Definition of telecommute

: to work at home by using a computer connection to a company's main office

More from Merriam-Webster on telecommute

Nglish: Translation of telecommute for Spanish Speakers


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