With the growth and flowering of corpus linguistics, that is, the systematic study of language usage as it occurs in real life and in real time especially through such media as the Internet, it is now possible to accurately chronicle what new words people use and what they mean by them. Since the role of dictionaries is to record language as it is actually used, not necessarily prescribe how it should be used, corpus linguistics allows dictionaries to add new words that have emerged and taken roots both globally and regionally.
In the last few months, many dictionaries updated their lexical databases to include several words that have enjoyed sustained usage over the last few years. Dictionaries also captured the expansion of the semantic fields of existing worlds. I will share many of these additions and changes with the reader in the coming weeks.
As technology, social media, popular culture, etc. evolve, new words are being invented to lexicalize these changes and dictionaries capture them in real time with the help of corpus linguistics. Below are some cool new English words, which I got from the Learnex website, a site that offers “free online English lessons.” It has been slightly edited for grammar, punctuation, brevity, and clarity:
1. “Shruggie.” Now all of you are probably using WhatsApp or Facebook on your phone or the computer. And frankly it’s made us a little lazy. You know when we are happy, we just send out a little smiley, to show that we are smiling. Well a shruggie is a little different but works on the same principle. So Just like the smiley, a shruggie is an emoticon indicating that a person is shrugging. A shrug basically is a gesture that is performed by lifting both shoulders and hands up. This gesture shows that you don’t know the answer to something or you don’t care about something.
Example: I texted a shruggie to my mother who asked me what I wanted for lunch.
2. “Normie.” This refers to an ordinary or normal person. A person who believes in popular opinion. So, Tom is a normie because he is a regular Facebook user. So this guy here, maybe now has taken up vegetarianism because that’s what everyone’s talking about. He’s not really thought about it for himself before indulging in something like that. That’s why he’s a normie, an ordinary person believing in popular opinion
3. “Smober.” Okay so just as people who give up drinking become sober, a person who gives up smoking or nicotine use becomes “smober.”
4. “Horosceptic.” Here’s another word that you can probably guess the meaning of . It’s called horosceptic. A skeptic is someone who finds it difficult to believe in something, so if you tell me that I can learn to play the guitar in two days, I’ll be skeptical. I’ll find that hard to believe. So a horosceptic is a person who does not believe in horoscopes or criticizes this kind of belief.
5. “Hand sauce.” This is a rather strange one. It’s called hand sauce. Now this is a new word that is used very often for a hand sanitizer
Eg. Hey there! My hands are dirty. Pass me the hand sauce. Sounds funny, I know, but this one’s also pretty much made its way into the dictionary.
6. “Usie.” Now when you’re walking in a mall or sitting in a restaurant. It’s just impossible to not look at a group of people taking what we previously called a group selfie. This is now called a usie, which is a group selfie where a photo of a group is taken by one of the people who is also in the picture. So, you could say that in school Jill loves taking usies with her classmates
7. “Woman-spreading.” As you can probably guess, it relates to something a woman does. Okay, so some women have this annoying habit of sitting in public transportation with their belongings around them, in such a way that there is no room for anyone to take the adjacent seats or the seats. I do wonder why this is more related to women than men. I think it’s because women carry more bags than men.
Example: You could say that we discourage womanspreading in public transportation.
8. “Selfiegenic.” Now some people are photogenic; they look really good in photos. But who takes photos? It’s all about selfies now, isn’t it? So our new word selfiegenic is someone who looks attractive in selfies.
Example: I don’t take selfies but I know a lot of you watching are definitely selfiegenic.
9. “Trumpaganda.” The world today is obsessed with money, beauty, being famous and…….(wait) DONALD TRUMP. Well, propaganda or information relating to Donald Trump or his administration is now known by a new word. This is called Trumpaganda.
Example: With the next US elections, we’re going to face a whole lot of Trumpaganda whether you like it or not
10. “Elationship.” If you are developing a nice little friendship with that cute guy in your class and you’re scared to talk to him in person, chances are that you trying to contact him via the Internet, instant messaging, or social media. What you are entering into is an elationship, which is a relationship that only exists through electronic media.
Example: How many of you are in an elationship with the girl next door?
11. “Memers.” As internet users, we all know what a meme is. For those who don’t, it’s a funny image or video or text that is copied and spread across the internet, especially on social media such as Facebook, Twitter, or WhatsApp. So the new word “memer” refers to a person who makes or uses memes
Example: My contacts on my phone are full of memers.
12. “Kadult.” Do you know people who don’t seem to grow up? I mean they are all nice and big physically, but their behavior belies their age. That’s because they behave like little kids. So here’s a new word for them. It’s called kadult referring to a person who is technically an adult due to age but still acts like a child.
Example: My 25 year old brother is a kadult.
12. “Frousin.” This new word is used for a friend who is a cousin or a cousin who is a friend. This is a very close relationship that you will have with a person as far as family or friendship goes.
Example: Maya and I have been frousins for a long time now.
13. “Bitheads.” I just learned that people are now investing in something new called the bit coin. And they’re going crazy about it. There is a word for these people; they are called bitheads: that is, people who are investors obsessed with the current bitcoin craze.
14. “Ten-up.” Do you know what a high five is? Of course you do, but what if I told you to give me a high five with both hands? Then it would technically not be a high five. Because using two hands means showing 10 fingers, right? So, here’s a new word for it called Ten-up: This is A high five made with both hands.
Example: I gave Daniel a ten-up when he scored the goal.
15. “Accidial.” Now, a lot of times, many people including accidentally end up calling people. Smart phones these days can do that to you. This “error” is now known by a new word called accidial (verb) : or the act of dialing someone’s number on your phone accidentally
Example: The other day I accidialed my boss at 5 a.m. That was quite embarrassing.