: the desires or behavior of a voyeur: such as
: the practice of obtaining sexual gratification from observing others
Psychiatrists generally divide paraphilias into two groups: those focused on objects, like a foot fetish, and those focused on behaviors, like exhibitionism, voyeurism or frottageBenedict Carey
Ward, if he was guilty of anything at all, was guilty of observation. Looking, or (if you will) leering and ogling are not normally considered indictable offenses in British courts of law, but they do shade over into voyeurismPaul Thomas
also : the criminal act of surreptitiously viewing a person without their consent in a place where the person has a reasonable expectation of privacy (such as a home or public bathroom) or of using a device (such as a camera) for the purpose of such viewing
A 21-year-old man has been charged with voyeurism for allegedly using his phone's camera to view the person using the restroom in the stall next to him in a dorm on the Notre Dame campus, according to court records. Melissa Hudson
: the practice of taking pleasure in observing something private, sordid, or scandalous
Now there's a volume for those who are … bored by the salacious voyeurism of tell-alls.Steven M. Zeitchik
Voyeurism allows us to experience all the excitement of disaster, catastrophe, and pain, to witness the most horrible human events, without any danger of feeling real pain.Gerald Mast
But the voice of the diarist … will always exert a fascination close to voyeurism.Rosellen Brown

Examples of voyeurism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Regulations are sparse, and the punishments for those that commit these crimes are lenient – video voyeurism is typically charged as a misdemeanor. Isabelle Chapman, CNN, 10 July 2024 Hasbro Children’s Hospital employee Jason Baker confessed to video voyeurism, according to WPRI in Providence, R.I. Brian Niemietz, New York Daily News, 28 Mar. 2024 Listen to this article The owner of a Guilford restaurant who was recently charged with possession of child pornography was arrested again and is facing stalking and voyeurism charges as well as violating a restraining order obtained by one of his employees, police said. Taylor Hartz, Hartford Courant, 5 Mar. 2024 In February 2022, Norfolk Naval Shipyard police officers were searching Mason’s phone in connection with a video voyeurism incident that happened at the shipyard in Portsmouth, prosecutors said. Julia Marnin, Miami Herald, 24 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for voyeurism 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'voyeurism.' 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

1913, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of voyeurism was in 1913

Dictionary Entries Near voyeurism

Cite this Entry

“Voyeurism.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/voyeurism. Accessed 21 Jul. 2024.

Medical Definition


voy·​eur·​ism -ˌiz-əm How to pronounce voyeurism (audio)
: the tendencies or behavior of a voyeur
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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