There was a time when cheating had “one definition” which contained (physical sexual contact) with someone other than your significant other assuming you were not in an “open relationship”. Today we have so much technology with email, instant messaging, digital photos, webcams, Skype, along with chats in Facebook and various other websites that make it possible to have “virtual affairs” with anyone around the globe. This has led to the (widening of the definition for cheating). In fact some people consider their mate to be cheating by watching pornography with (no interaction) from a live person.
Most certainly the people that are masturbating in front of their computer webcams, exchanging photos, and erotic chats/emails would argue that since they have never (met) the person and there is (no) actual touching then it’s primarily “fantasy” and not cheating. However if you ask their mates how they feel about it most of them would consider it to be a form of cheating and quite a few would say it’s a “deal breaker” if their mate does not quit. You have to ask yourself how (you) would feel if you learned (your mate) was secretly engaged in that behavior.
The simplest definition I ever heard for cheating came from Dr. Phil. He said, “If you are saying or doing something that you would (not) do with your spouse/significant other (sitting right next to you) then you are cheating.” Essentially that would also entail flirting and using sexual innuendo. (When you think about it just about every relationship you enter into began with some initial flirting.)
Personally I don’t think it’s “okay” to have (sex chat) outside of a relationship and I would feel hurt if I discovered my wife was engaged in it with another man. If I’m being completely honest I’d probably end the marriage. The key ingredients to “cheating” are deception, secrecy, betrayal, lying directly and by omission. No one enjoys being made a fool of. One man’s opinion! :-)