channel

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(all) great minds run in the same channel

Wise or intelligent people tend to have the same ideas or think in a similar way. Often used humorously regarding unremarkable thoughts occurring simultaneously between two or more people. Oh, you wanted to see the same film as me? All great minds run in the same channel, I guess! Tom and I both brought the same gift to Sarah's party because great minds run in the same channel. A: "Eric and I both came in early today, so clearly, all great minds run in the same channel." B: "I'm not so sure, considering we're talking about you two dopes."
See also: channel, great, mind, run, same

backchannel

1. noun A clandestine avenue for conveying information or engaging in conversation, often in politics. Is it true that that group of senators worked with the hostile nation through an unofficial backchannel?
2. noun An environment for online discussion that occurs simultaneous to some external event, such as a conference, TV show, lecture, etc. Is Twitter the most popular backchannel for real-time complaints about TV shows? I worry that my students are using the new chat feature as a backchannel—and distracting themselves from the material I'm presenting.
3. adjective Of or relating to clandestine avenues for conveying information. Analysts believe a deal is being forged through backchannel negotiations between political party members.
4. adjective Describing or relating to verbal and non-verbal cues given by a listener to the speaker to emphasize that they are listening. So simply nodding and saying "Uh huh" are considered backchannel responses?

change the channel

1. Literally, to switch from one television station (or "channel") to another. Never change the channel during the game! We might miss something! I'm not really paying attention to that show, so feel free to change the channel.
2. slang To introduce a different topic of discussion, usually intentionally. I changed the channel after that last remark made Jeff and Bill visibly tense.
See also: change, channel

channel (something) in(to) (something)

1. To force something, usually a liquid, to travel into something through a channel. We had to channel water in from the river after our pipes burst.
2. To allocate or give resources, such as money or time, to a particular venture or goal. How much money do you think the company would be willing to channel into this initiative?
3. To direct or release something, often energy or an emotion, into something else. With all the red paint, I'm not surprised to hear that the artist channeled a lot of anger into this piece. You need to channel your frustration into something positive. Come on a run with me.
See also: channel

channel (something) off

1. To remove or redirect something, usually a liquid, through a channel. You move things to higher ground while I try to channel some of this water off.
2. To squander resources, such as money or time. Look, the company won't give us any more money for this initiative if those guys keep channeling it off.
See also: channel, off

channel surf

To frequently change channels when watching television, especially for an extended period of time. Primarily heard in US. After a long week of work, I like to just sit on the sofa and channel surf for a few hours.
See also: channel, surf

channel surfer

One who quickly switches between channels on a TV, as while looking for a program to watch. Hey, channel surfer, can you slow down so I can actually see what's on?
See also: channel, surfer

channel surfing

The frequent changing of channels when watching television, especially for an extended period of time. Primarily heard in US. I hate channel surfing. I can't understand why people don't just pick a program and watch it!
See also: channel, surfing

channel-hopping

Quickly switching between channels on a TV, as while looking for a program to watch. I'm channel-hopping, but it doesn't look like anything good is on.

channel-surfing

Quickly switching between channels on a TV, as while looking for a program to watch. I'm channel-surfing, but it doesn't look like anything good is on.

channel-zapping

Quickly switching between channels on a TV, as while looking for a program to watch. I'm channel-zapping, but it doesn't look like anything good is on.

go through (the proper) channels

To take the correct or accepted steps toward achieving some goal or outcome. I'm sorry, but we can't approve of this request because you didn't go through the proper channels. If you went through channels, then they have no reason to turn you away.
See also: channel, go, through

set up a backchannel

1. To establish a clandestine avenue for conveying information or engaging in conversation, often in politics. Is it true that that group of senators set up a backchannel in order to negotiate with the hostile nation?
2. To establish an avenue for online discussion that occurs simultaneous to the live broadcasting of something, such as a conference or a TV show. Have they set up a backchannel for the conference? I would like to be able to discuss the material with other participants.
See also: backchannel, set, up

surf the channels

To quickly switch between television channels, as while looking for a program to watch. I'm surfing the channels, but it doesn't look like anything good is on.
See also: channel, surf

use a backchannel

1. To use a clandestine avenue for conveying information or engaging in conversation, often in politics. Is it true that the group of senators used a backchannel in order to negotiate with the hostile nation?
2. To use an online avenue to discuss something, such as a conference, TV show, or class, as it happens. I would like to be able to use a backchannel during the conference, so that I can discuss the material with other participants.
See also: backchannel, use

work through channels

To follow the proper bureaucratic procedures and hierarchies of authority in order to do something. I know the whole system is horribly convoluted, but you'll have to work through channels if you want to appeal the decision. The politician promised that she was working through channels in Washington to overhaul the tax code for lower- and middle-class workers.
See also: channel, through, work
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

change the channel

Sl. to switch to some other topic of conversation. Just a minute. I think you changed the channel. Let's go back to the part about you owing me money. Let's change the channel here before there is a fight.
See also: change, channel

channel something in

 (to something)
1. Lit. to divert water or other liquid through a channel into something. The farmer channeled the irrigation water into the field.
2. Fig. to divert something, such as energy, money, effort, into something. The government channeled a great deal of money into rebuilding the inner part of the city. I can't channel any more of our workforce into this project.
See also: channel

channel something off

 
1. Lit. to drain off water or some other liquid through a channel. The front yard is flooded, and we will have to channel the water off. Let's channel off the water before it gets too deep.
2. Fig. to drain off or waste energy, money, effort, etc. Unemployment channeled their resources off. The war channeled off most of the resources of the country.
See also: channel, off

go through (the proper) channels

to use the proper procedure, working through the correct people and offices to get something done; to cooperate with a bureaucracy. I'm sorry. I can't help you. You'll have to go through the proper channels. I didn't get what I wanted because I didn't go through channels.
See also: channel, go, through

work through channels

Fig. to try to get something done by going through the proper procedures and persons. You can't accomplish anything around here if you don't work through channels. I tried working through channels, but it takes too long. This is an emergency.
See also: channel, through, work
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

channel surfing

Switching from one television station (channel) to another frequently, either to search for an interesting program or to keep track of several programs at once. For example, What did you see on TV last night?-Nothing much; I was just channel surfing. The term transfers the surfer's search for good waves to the viewer's search for programs. This practice became widespread with the use of remote-control devices for changing channels while remaining seated some distance from the television set. [1980s] A 1990s version is Internet surfing, a similar process for searching cyberspace.
See also: channel, surfing

go through channels

Use the correct procedure, especially in a hierarchy or bureaucracy. For example, You'll have to go through channels for approval of this expenditure. This term uses channel in the sense of "a conduit." [Mid-1900s]
See also: channel, go, through

great minds run in the same channel, all

Intelligent persons think alike or come up with similar ideas. For example, I see you brought your tennis racket-thank goodness for great minds. This term is often uttered (sometimes jokingly) when two persons seem to find the same answer simultaneously, and is frequently shortened. [Late 1500s]
See also: all, great, mind, run, same
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

change the channel

tv. to switch to some other topic of conversation. Let’s change the channel here before there is a fight.
See also: change, channel

channel hopping

and channel surfing and channel zapping
n. using a remote control to move quickly from one television channel to another, pausing only a short time on each channel. I wish you would stop channel hopping! He spends more time channel zapping than actually watching.
See also: channel, hop

channel surfing

verb
See also: channel, surfing

channel zapping

verb
See also: channel, zap

channel surfer

n. a person who practices channel hopping. My husband is a confirmed channel surfer. I can’t understand why he does it.
See also: channel, surfer
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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