“Buzzworthy” Words Added to the ODO

Every so often the ODO (Oxford Dictionaries Online) adds a few words to reflect the ever changing nature of the English language. Considering that what we say has a lot to do with how we see the world, this list seems to indicate—to me at least—that the world is being viewed as a Google Earth shot. That is to say, the majority of the words are skewed toward internet speak, or reference technology in some way.

Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against the techno-speak, and I realize that language is constantly being shortened to better fit into the channels of communication available, but I have a serious problem with the word “apols”. It’s a noun used as an abbreviation for the word apologies. I hate it. I realize it is probably used casually (e.g., “apols for the long message…”), but apologizing shouldn’t be casual. I suppose it isn’t the word I don’t like, just the idea of its use. Either you apologize so often you need to use a shortened form of the word, or you aren’t sincere enough to press the few extra keys it takes to spell out the whole word.

That’s just my opinion though, and you are free to form your own. You may love them, or you may hate them, but these words represent the way people are choosing to communicate and if you don’t want to suffer from a bad case of “fomo” (noun. anxiety that an exciting or interesting event may currently be happening elsewhere. A shortened form of “fear of missing out”) you might want to take a look at the list of a few of the words below.

·         Babymoon: a relaxing or romantic holiday taken by parents-to-be before their baby is born. (Now, this word I like. If I had known how sleep deprived I’d still be even with a two year old, I’d have been on a babymoon the whole time I was pregnant.)

·         Click and Collect: a shopping facility whereby a customer can buy or order goods from a store’s website and collect them from a local branch.

Dictionary

·         Derp: used as a substitute for speech regarded as meaningless or stupid, or to comment on a foolish or stupid action. (I heard this on an episode of the animated show South Park, and then started noticing it all over Facebook and Twitter. I find this one annoying, but I guess that’s sort of the point.)

·         Emoji: a small digital image or icon used to express an idea or emotion in electronic communication. (This one comes from Japanese.)

·         Guac: an abbreviation for guacamole. ( I use this all the time. Sometimes it’s hard for me to start speaking a sentence in English and throw in a word in Spanish because I naturally want to carry on the sentence using my Mexican accent and rhythm. Anglicizing the word helps, so “guac” has long been my go-to word for referring to guacamole in English.)

·         Mooc: a course of study made available over the Internet without charge to a very large number of people.

For the complete list of the new words, or to look up any others, check out oxforddictionaries.com. I suggest you do so with a pen and paper handy with which to make a list of favorites (or least favorites), post them here and we can compare.

Do you consider yourself to be a word-nerd? What’s your new favorite word this year?

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