What is PEBCAK?

What is PEBCAK?


What Does “PEBCAK Error” Mean?

A PEBCAK Error is a term used by support and technical staff to describe a situation where an end user is having trouble with an application or their workstation. It stands for “Problem Exists Between Chair and Keyboard,” suggesting that the issue originates from the user themselves.

Explains the PEBCAK Error

A PEBCAK Error is typically used to describe a situation where an end user makes a basic mistake while using a computer or software. For instance, it might be used when a user struggles with entering a password because they have the CAPS LOCK key activated.


This term is often used in a humorous way to explain what went wrong when a user just can’t seem to get something right. However, it’s important to note that it’s considered derogatory and should only be used in the support department as an inside joke among staff. It shouldn’t be mentioned in formal trouble tickets or in interactions with customers.


What does PEBKAC mean?

PEBKAC stands for “Problem Exists Between Keyboard and Chair.” It’s a humorous way of describing issues that occur on a computer or website but are actually caused by user error.

What is a PICNIC error?

PICNIC is an acronym for “Problem In Chair, Not In Computer.” It humorously suggests that the problem was not with the computer itself but with the user operating it.


Tech support often uses “PEBKAC” (or variations like “PBCAK” or “PBKAC”) to indicate a problem caused by the user, not the system. An alternative term is “PICNIC,” which also suggests that the issue lies with the user, not the computer.

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