The next time you need a quick brush up on the hip Millennial-speak circulating the interwebs, you now need look no further than Oxford Dictionaries. On Wednesday, the official blog for OxfordDictionaries.com announced a slew of words it’s adding to its online database in a quarterly update and you might be surprised to see how many of them are decidedly 21st-century.
Some of these modern delicacies include “amazeballs,” “bro hug,” “humblebrag,” and “douchebaggery,” just to name a few. There are also several shortened words like “cray” and “adorbs,” plus a sprinkling of portmanteaus like “listicle,” “mansplain,” “acquihire,” and even “zonkey.”
Drake, of all people, can add another accomplishment to his resume as well, because “YOLO” is also among the new entries. The phrase “you only live once” has been around for years, but popularization of the acronym condensing it is commonly attributed to the rapper.
Another theme for some of the words has to do with media consumption. Take “fandom,” for instance, meaning the collective fan group for a particular TV series, movie, person, book, what have you (as in “Man, the “Sherlock” fandom is cray”). Naturally, “binge-watch” is on the list, having entered the modern lexicon since the invention of Netflix. One you might not be as familiar with is “hate-watch,” wherein someone watches a bad show or movie for the sole purpose of mocking it (think along the lines of “MST3K”).
If you’re wondering why the almighty “selfie” isn’t on the list, it’s because the word has already been recognized by Oxford Dictionaries. Last fall, it was crowned the international Word of the Year for 2013. Between November 2012 and November 2013, the frequency of “selfie” increased by a staggering 17,000 percent.
The Oxford news comes about a week after Merriam-Webster announced its first major update to the "Official SCRABBLE Players Dictionary" in a decade that includes 5,000 new words, many of which are modern terms like "chillax," "bromance," "mixtape," and, of course, "selfie."
As NBC News points out, don’t go flipping out over the fact that these trendy whippersnapper words are now in the dictionary right away. The new entries are only included on OxfordDictionaries.com and aren’t going into the official Oxford English Dictionary. Those words must have more “historical, significant impact” to earn that honor, so until some of the words become less hip and more common, Oxford Dictionaries won’t add them to the official ranks.