Definition of short in The Network Encyclopedia.

What is Short (in computer networking)?

A condition that occurs when signal-carrying conductors make contact. The effect of a short is similar to having a break in the cable - network communication ceases. To find or isolate a short, use a cable tester or time domain reflectometer.

Cable shorts can occur only in copper cables, not fiber-optic cables, although breaks can occur in fiber-optic cables.