telephone tag


Definition of telephone tag

: telephoning back and forth by parties trying to reach each other without success

Examples of telephone tag in a Sentence

We've been playing telephone tag—she's always out when I call, and vice versa.
Recent Examples on the Web Not that there aren’t plenty of excuses for slipping up, given the immensity of the task and its attendant glitches – the outdated lists, the telephone tag, the last-minute head-count changes. Mary Beth Mccauley, The Christian Science Monitor, "One woman embraces Third Commandment in feeding 1,600 at Thanksgiving," 1 Nov. 2019

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

First Known Use of telephone tag

1969, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of telephone tag was in 1969

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Cite this Entry

“Telephone tag.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for telephone tag

telephone tag


English Language Learners Definition of telephone tag

chiefly US : a situation in which two people keep trying to call each other on the telephone but are unable to reach each other

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