As digital and internet culture continues to grow, our societal and cultural norms become increasingly entrenched in the online world. In fact, in September, Merriam-Webster added more than 840 new entries, and, unsurprisingly, many stem from the digital realm.
Digital Words in the Offline World
These new words have seeped their way from the online sphere into our everyday offline lives, for better or for worse. Words recently added like “bingeable”, “Instagramming” and “airplane mode” have become less online or technical jargon and more a part of our vernacular. What’s your favorite bingeable show on Netflix? Do you see those kids Instagramming their food? Don’t forget to put your phone on airplane mode prior to takeoff. Other words stemming from our technology use that were added recently? “Predictive text” and “force quit”.
Are these new words a necessity for the dictionary? You be the judge. Here are a few of the craziest new entries:
- Bougie – “Marked by a concern for wealth, possessions, and respectability: Bourgeois.”
- Hophead – “A beer enthusiast.”
- Time Suck – “An activity to which one devotes a lot of time that might be better or more productively spent doing other things.”
- Ribbie – “Informal pronunciation of RBI, or a run in baseball that is driven in by a batter.”
- Zuke – “Zucchini”
Abbreviation not Elongation
Another notable trend, most likely tracing its roots back to online chat or text messaging, is the abbreviation of words in casual speech. Want to get margs, chips and guac this weekend? Thanks for the adorbs gift; you’re my fav! These abbreviated versions of margarita, guacamole, adorable and favorite are now all in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary.
TL;DR – New technology rooted words have also been added to the dictionary (Too long; didn’t read was also added in September). It’s crucial for marketers to be on top of our game in all aspects of communications. This includes new trends in words and internet culture.
At Proof Strategies we are tuned into all communications trends from Generation Z and beyond. We talk the internet talk and walk the online walk. If you have trouble navigating the ever-changing world of communications contact us here. We’d love to help you achieve your communications goals.