Ruputable companies such as Schneider electric seem to distinguish their series SPD's from parallel SPD's based on the frequency content in the disturbances they they are intended to address. For example this bit of marketting from one of their so called white papers "Benefits of series-connected devices include mitigation of potentially damaging high-frequency noise, a tighter clamping voltage, and performance that is independent of installation practices.". ( I linked this paper several posts back). They go on to compare with parallel devices which are intended for lower frequency high energy surges. Maybe it is not just the laymen using the terminology. Since I'm not an expert, I can only imagine that the spectral content of a bolt of lightning consists mostly higher frequency energy, well above line frequency, and therefore a low pass filter of some topology would make a great tool for the job of snubbing the lightning induced surges for example. Since I cannot find any circuit diagrams of series SPD's I have no idea what is really contained within one. I was kind of hoping you'd have a bit more of a technical response than another appeal to your great authority.