UTAH TECH UNIVERSITY'S STUDENT NEWS SOURCE | September 25, 2022

‘Buzzworthy,’ ‘derpy’ words added to dictionary

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The world’s most trusted dictionary has announced more than 50 “buzzworthy” words have been added to the New Oxford American Dictionary, and some are “srsly” “derpy.”

Oxford University Press recognized many new American slang words in August that have made their way into common use. Each year, about 1,000 words are added, which are collected from online databases and other sources.

If you’ve ever wondered exactly what “jorts” are, or what “FOMO” means, you’re in luck. Just look it up here on your “phablet” while spending some “me time.” These words are sure to make you “squee.”

Shauni Joseph, a sophomore nursing major from St. George, said she believes these words are hindering the English language.

“I think we’re getting stupid,” Joseph said. “Everything is online. Everything is becoming computer-oriented. I hate the word ‘twerk.’ It bugs me. I personally think it’s gross.”

Breanna Orullian, a junior communication major from Murray, said she believes “beefcake” is the strangest word added. “Beefcake” is defined as an attractive man with well-developed muscles.

“I would have never associated that word with the definition,” Orullian said. 

Orullian said these words are a reflection of the younger generation in today’s society.

“We’re becoming more technological and creative, which helps us come up with them,” Orullian said. “But these words do not deserve to be in the dictionary. They do not belong in dictionaries, essays or meaningful works of literature.”

Many of the added words are acronyms and abbreviations, including “FOMO” (fear of missing out), “srsly” (seriously), “BYOD” (bring your own device), and “vom” (vomit).

Vladimir Sergeev, a freshman criminal justice major from St. George, said “srsly” and “FOMO” are the strangest because he never expected to see acronyms or shortened words in the dictionary.

“I think that lots of people are using these words in text messages,” Sergeev said. “These words deserve to be in the dictionary. Times have changed.”

Sergeev offers an interesting perspective, whereas out of 20 DSU students surveyed, none of them believed any of these words are dictionary worthy.

While many people have their personal opinions on the words themselves, Jordon Sharp, director of student involvement and leadership, defends these words because society uses them.

“Languages, like most aspects of our lives, are in a state of constant change,” Sharp said. “A language is nothing more than a system of communication that a particular community utilizes. Thus, when symbols and meanings change within that community, so does the language.”

Kayli Dastrup, a junior physical science major from St. George, said all of these words should be left out of the dictionary—besides “food baby.”

“My personal favorite would have to be ‘food baby’ due to the amount of usage I get out of that word,” Dastrup said. “I generally use it after every meal.”

Dastrup said she thinks “geek chic” is the strangest word added.

“That’s an oxymoron in my eyes,” she said. 

Sharp explained why these words are necessary for the dictionary.

“Although we might find it hard to understand the works of Shakespeare, likewise Shakespeare would have a hard time knowing what to make of your latest ‘selfie’ taken on your ‘phablet’ sporting your new ‘jorts’ and ‘fauxhawk’,” Sharp said.