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New Words in the Oxford English Dictionary

Updated on February 19, 2017

Oxtord English Dictionary Online is Out

The newest edition of the Oxford English Dictionary Online is out. And as far as I am concerned the Oxford English Online Dictionary is OUT! Some of what have been included are NOT words at all.

The Oxford English Dictionary Online is NOT on my favorite book list these days. Even though it is known as the authoritative reference book and the final word on words, it is not getting my thumbs up this year.

From the more than 1,900 entries, some of the new entries are digital shorthand terms that are used in the world of technology.

  • OMG - short for "Oh my God" or "Oh my gosh"
  • LOL - short for "laughing out loud"
  • IMHO - short for "in my humble opinion"
  • BFF - short for "best friends forever"
  • FYI - short for "for your information"
  • TMI - short for "too much information"

 

Now that is a Muffin Top!
Now that is a Muffin Top! | Source

"Muffin Top"

I can understand how "muffin top" made it into the dictionary. It is a combination of real words. So what is a "muffin top"?

A "muffin top" is defined as "a protuberance of flesh above the waistband of a tight pair of trousers."

"Muffin top" gets my vote for having been included along with the new revisions in the Oxford English Dictionary Online!

"Heart"

I don't agree with this one at all. "Heart is a noun and NOT a verb as the Oxford English Dictionary Online has made it out to be.

The new entry for "heart" as a verb is a casual equivalent of "to love" that is represented with a symbol, as seen on millions of souvenirs proclaiming "I (heart) Virginia."

I still prefer saying, "I love you" instead of saying, "I heart you." And of now, I will continue to say the former.

How does a word make it into the OED anyway?

Key criteria is used to put a word in the Oxford English Dictionary Online.

  • The word must be widespread and frequently used.
  • The general population should understand it.
  • The word must have a substantive lifespan to see if it will survive before it is included. The lifespan before a word is included is generally five years. Some words are added quicker if they seem historically significance. For instance, AIDS was added quickly.

Once Included in the OED, ALWAYS included in the OED

Once words are included in the OED, they are always included. They are never removed even though they may fade from everyday use.

Even so, I don't like most of the inclusions this year. I can't say, "I heart it" because I don't. So thumbs down this time, Oxford English Dictionary Online.

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    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      HattieMattieMae, I am so surprised that some of that jargon was included in the Oxford English Dictionary Online, but it was and once it's in, it's always there.

    • SubRon7 profile image

      James W. Nelson 6 years ago from eastern North Dakota

      Great hub, Revmjm, and thanks for the info. I had seen IMHO, BFF, TMI, but didn't know what they meant. Yay! Now I do! About my age, I turned 66 in October. Have a great one, Revmjm

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      SubRon7, thanks for reading and responding. FYI: I am going to become your HubPages BFF. (LOL)

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 6 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Great points Rev!

      The language is slowly being destroyed.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      WillStarr, thanks for reading and responding to my article about the new words in the Oxford English Dictionary Online.

    • profile image

      Miss Capri 6 years ago

      I don't have a problem with this, language and the way it's written changes over time, and that includes internet-speak, though the downside is of course that the dreaded text-speak and leet-speak might someday be included, but then, I personally dislike those things, they're less shorthand and more a mangling of the English Language. I hope they don't ever include 4chan-speak either. Now, what is seriously annoying is anti-Christians who use their own terms for people with abandon, yet they yell blue murder when people call them what they are, Christophobes. "Christophobe isn't a word! It's just a madeup word!" So? 'xenophobe' and that other phobe word running rampant on the net were at one time as well. So yes, Christophobe is a word. Bit of a tangent, but I'd rather see OMG and LOL in the dictionary than see one more person yowling "Christophobe is just a made up word!"

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Miss Capri, thanks for reading and responding. You were on a roll there; almost enough to have written your own article. (LOL)

    • profile image

      Miss Capri 6 years ago

      *Grins* LOL indeed. You're welcome. Yes - get me started on something and - well, If I hadn't already posted an article about expressions people use that need to go, I'd make a hub on that.

    • Harlan Colt profile image

      Harlan Colt 6 years ago from the Rocky Mountains

      HattieMattieMae - I love ya girlfrien' but I only agree in part. Communication and language need to progress too. New ways of saying things, doing things. etc. are bound to come along. Some of us old dusty folks, like myself are hard to follow suit, but the truth is - language evolves. We humans never evolved - but since Adam and Eve our language sure has! Can I get an Amen?

      Unlesseth thou still talketh unto us in thee old English?

      - luv ya in Christ

      - Harlan

    • profile image

      Miss Capri 6 years ago

      Hehe Harlan. The last bit of your comment made me laugh. I don't like the "heart" thing, either spelled out or typed as an emote. It's like they're trying to be this strange combination of overly cutesy and emo. *Shudder* Ugh.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Harlan, you get an "Amen" from me.

      Miss Capri, I guess we have to get used to the "heart" thing as well as the others. As I stated in my article, once something goes into the Oxford English Dictionary Online, it stays FOREVER!

    • profile image

      jdove-miller 6 years ago

      Whew! I'm glad you posted this because I had misunderstood the news story and thought that those non-words had been included in the standard dictionary, not the online one. I know that language evolves, but this turn left me smh! : )

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      jdove-miller, when I saw this on the news I knew I had to write an article about it. Like you, from the news, people might have thought these words were included in our standard dictionaries. First of it, it is a British dictionary. As you stated, it is the Oxford English Dictionary Online. I was very specific about using that title.

      I like the opportunity to expound in a simple way on what I hear on the news.

      Thanks jdove-miller for reading and responding.

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 6 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      revmjm: LOL = Laughing out Loud, and here I thought it meant Lots of Love. Thank you for the update on the teen jargon. Here's a new one for you. Gby = God bless you!

    • teresa8go profile image

      teresa8go 6 years ago from Michigan, USA

      I had heard that the Oxford English Dictionary has been having a difficult time money wise. Their sales were declining rapidly. So I figure including these acronyms might be a marketing ploy to reach the younger people. Just like everything else is targeting their sales for younger people these days.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Dave, I am glad you were brought up to date on what LOL means in the digital world. (LOL)

      teresa8go, I think you are right. Appealing to the younger generation is the fastest way to get sales these days.

    • Becky Puetz profile image

      Becky 6 years ago from Oklahoma

      revmjm, It was very interesting learn of these new additions to the Oxford English dictionary. I had no idea. Perhaps they are trying to appeal to the younger generation or just maybe these new additions are the speech of the future. Let's hope not. :)

      I'll never forget the day, a few years ago when my daughter who is now 21 came home excited about a concert she was planning to attend with friends. They were chirping happily about the event, when I heard her say "OMG" I can 't wait "til" Friday. I inquired as to what OMG meant. She looked at me as if to say oh no-did I say that in front of mom. I pressed her to tell me and looking ashamed she did. It means "Oh my God". Well, she knew better than that. She knows that if she uses God's name, she had better be in a conversation with Him. She knew it was time for us to talk. She excused herself from her friends and we had a long discussion about it. That was the first and last time, she used that "expression" as she declared it to be, at least in front of me. She related some of what we talked about to her friends and even to this day, when they enter my house, they watch what they say and how they say it. Thanks for sharing.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Becky, thanks for reading and responding. In defense of your daughter OMG also means "Oh my gosh." However, I tend not to use it for either one of the meanings.

    • profile image

      Marcella Glenn 6 years ago from PA

      Interestng hub.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Marcella, thanks for reading and responding to this article about the new words added to the Oxford English Dictionary.

    • FaithDream profile image

      FaithDream 6 years ago from (Midwest) USA

      Funny.... LOL.. and all that jazz. Words are now acronyms because of texting and tweets. Man, we have come a long way.. Loved your article and the photo is hilarious.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      FaithDream, yes that was some "muffin top." We have come a long way and will go even further with the texting and tweets. I use some of the terms; however, I am left behind on most of them.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      FaithDream, yes that was some "muffin top." We have come a long way and will go even further with the texting and tweets. I use some of the terms; however, I am left behind on most of them.

    • Tamarajo profile image

      Tamarajo 6 years ago from Southern Minnesota

      This is what I love so much about the Biblical Hebrew language. It never changes with cultural shifts and associations. I think it is these rapid shift word associations that make the translation so difficult.

      I can see how the slang section could be helpful for people who are learning English from another language as the phrases could be rather confusing.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Tamarajo, I love the Biblical Hebrew language as well. I think it is so beautiful. I don't think people respect and appreciate the English language as much. If they did, there would not be so many changes. And if you have noticed, a lot of the changes have a negative connotation such as "muffin top."

    • HattieMattieMae profile image

      HattieMattieMae 6 years ago from Limburg, Netherlands

      Well the dictionary may like those words, but I don't know any professor of mine that would allow me to us them any more than APA guidlines in resarch, or important documents. lol Hmm although as a mother I do keep on the jargon just so I know what my child is communicating, and every other child. Think it is their morse code so they think we don't know what they are saying, but of course maybe the dictionary is smart in that sense allowing us to keep tabs on their smart intelligent minds! lol

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      HattieMattieMae, that's one way of looking at it. If it's in the dictionary, we will know what the meaning of the word is. I hadn't thought of it quite like that, so thanks for bringing up that point.

    • HattieMattieMae profile image

      HattieMattieMae 6 years ago from Limburg, Netherlands

      ha ha being my writers group this morning some one brought up the word mue, they used back in time, have you ever seen it! lol

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      HattieMattieMae, No, I have never heard the word "mue" or seen it written. What does it mean?

    • HattieMattieMae profile image

      HattieMattieMae 6 years ago from Limburg, Netherlands

      imagines spiteful cows

      Never know what they will bring up in the writing group! Always fun!

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Thanks, HattieMattieMae!

    • profile image

      Miss Capri 6 years ago

      Heh, "mue" I've heard of and used "mook" to describe people who get on my nerves before. I dislike "muffintop" seriously, that entry needs to go. I also dislike anyreferences to skin color as food items. People need to get over appearances. As long as we're decent people, it makes no difference whether or not we have "muffintops" or what shade our skin is. I do use "OMG" as "Oh my gosh" but if I say "Oh My God" at all, it is always directed toward him, even in an utterance of extreme distress. I also believe there is another, even worse way to blaspheme than carelessly say "Oh My God" the way far too many people do. This even worse blaspheme is the sort people do when they call themselves Christian but act the very opposite. Any people who have committed acts of cruelty in God's name have been the worst blasphemers in history. Sheesh, I should make a hub about that, too.

    • profile image

      Motown2Chitown 6 years ago

      Okay, I just have this to say, this is a great hub, and you, my dear are a woman after my own heart. A word is a word. It is not simply a collection of letters that abbreviate a number of words into shorthand. An abbreviation is just that - an abbreviation! Dictionaries should contain WORDS that can be defined. I find it perfectly acceptable that abbreviations for those WORDS be listed, but I want WORDS! Even AIDS? It's an acronym, not a word! Ugh. I hereby sign the petition to have all of these new WORDS removed from the OED - online or otherwise. Great hub. Now my blood is really pumping. :)

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Miss Capri and Motown2Chitown, thanks for reading and responding.

    • jagandelight profile image

      jagandelight 6 years ago from Florida

      Hey rev,

      muffin top is a new one on me, I laughed at the picture and said I guess I have my own muffin top going on.

      BFF-I knew it was best friend but couldn't remember what was the other 'f' for now I know its forever. Thanks again, a great hub.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      jagandelight, I am glad you learned something from this article. Thanks for reading and responding.

    • profile image

      Miss Capri 6 years ago

      It took me a while to figure out 'bff' too. Ugh, I don't even like the phrase to begin with. It implies that enot every best friend can stay a best friend while some other people are chosen over and above to be a best friend forever. Wha? So I can be someone's best friend but not forever because So-and-So has that distinction, no matter what life throws at you - aw, shucks, another idea for a hub. *Grins*

    • Betty Johansen profile image

      Betty Johansen 6 years ago

      You're talking words, so here's one of my pet peeves - snuck. Is "snuck" in the dictionary? One day in class, I used the term "sneaked" and a student corrected me. "There's no such word as 'sneaked'," I was informed. "The word is 'snuck'." I didn't go balistic, but I thought about it. When anyone says "snuck," it's like fingernails on the blackboard to me. Argh!!!!

    • profile image

      Miss Capri 6 years ago

      Oh, wow, maybe it's a reginal thing? Where I come from, we all say "snuck" "sneaked" just sounds wrong. Then there's "dragged" and "drug" I use "dragged" one of my friends uses "drug" and we both come from the same part of the world, so, go figure. :) I'm pretty sure "snuck" is a word, and so is "sneaked" you'll find either used in writing by different authors.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Betty and Miss Capri, you sneaked this one in on me, or you snuck this one in on me? "Snuck" is in the dictionary as the past tense of "sneak." However, I never use "snuck." My pet peeve is to hear people say: "conversate" and "irregardless."

    • profile image

      Motown2Chitown 6 years ago

      Ouch, rev! No wonder you had a hard time making it through the first paragraph of my best hub ever! And, I'm right there with you about "irregardless," along with "dethaw." Eke! Those two make me tremble.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Motown2Chitown, thanks for understanding about my remark on your page. I know you were showing what was wrong before you said what was right. However, I couldn't make it through all the wrong words. You did get credit for me being there though.

    • profile image

      Motown2Chitown 6 years ago

      Well, when you get the chance, go back and re-read it. Just SKIP the first paragraph. :)

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Motown2Chitown, OK. I can do that. I will leave a comment to let you know I've been there.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Treathyl FOX, someone else said the same thing. In the digital world it usually means "laughing out loud." I think it used to mean "lots of love."

    • profile image

      Motown2Chitown 6 years ago

      Well, rev, keep in mind as you read that I published it under satire and parody for a reason. There's a bit of a facetious tone to the entire hub. :)

    • Treasuresofheaven profile image

      Sima Ballinger 6 years ago from Michigan

      This is good revmjm, thanks for the heads up. One of my favorites is, "Muffin top." - For laughs.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Yes, "muffin top" is in the OED and once a word gets in, its stays in. So "muffin top" is here to stay! Thanks for reading and responding.

    • capncrunch profile image

      capncrunch 6 years ago from New Orleans

      Hello revmjm,

      Whether we like it or not our whole english language is probably changing before us. Very informinal Hub! Thank you.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      capncrunch, you are so right! Whether we like it or not our whole English language is changing! We just have to go along with it to keep up!

    • profile image

      PurvisBobbi44 6 years ago

      revmjm,

      I enjoy reading your Hubs, you have such a fresh look on life, with good common sense. The world needs more people like you.

      Thanks,

      Bobbi

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Bobbi, thanks for reading and for your kind comment. I try to write as if I'm talking face-to-face with people. I think that's why my writing comes off the way it does. I'll keep writing as long as you keep reading!

    • dilipchandra12 profile image

      Dilip Chandra 6 years ago from India

      Thanks for the information. I really don't know about those shorthand terms especially the last four you have written and thanks for the other words too.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 6 years ago from Richmond, VA

      dilipchandra12, thanks a lot for reading and responding!

    • Kamalesh050 profile image

      Kamalesh050 5 years ago from Sahaganj, Dist. Hooghly, West Bengal, India

      Great hub, very interesting. Thanks a lot for sharing.

      Best Wishes.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 5 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Kamalesh050, Thanks for responding to my article.

      Best Wishes!

    • megni profile image

      megni 5 years ago

      New words must hang around for a while before they catch my fancy. But it's good to be aware of those that will probably make their way into the dictionary.

    • revmjm profile image
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      Article Written By Margaret Minnicks 5 years ago from Richmond, VA

      megni, you are exactly right. I feel the same way about new words. Thanks for responding.

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