Remember when “tweet” was a sound produced primarily by birds? Since the advent of Twitter, “tweet” has taken on another meaning as both a noun and a verb—and those meanings have now been given the Oxford English Dictionary Seal of Approval: the OED has included “tweet” in its most recent update.
Normally the OED waits 10 years to decide whether a word is here to stay, but lately it has made exceptions for words having arisen as a result of social media. In June it also added “big data,” “crowdsourcing,” “mouseover” and “ereader.”
Can you predict what other new words will make the next update of the OED? I’m guessing the meaning of “tablet” associated with Kindles and iPads will be making the cut fairly soon. “Butt dialing, ” anyone?
Whenever I mention the OED, I feel obligated (and happy) to remind you of the fascinating book by Simon Winchester, The Professor and the Madman. The man who compiled more words than anyone else for the first edition of this granddaddy of all dictionaries turned out to be an incarcerated murderer, the madman of Winchester’s title. Check it out on Amazon and see if it interests you.