The last decade has experienced a flourishing social media dialogue across the globe. This global dialogue characterised with an astute informality and popularity on social media platforms has enriched our vocabulary with new terms. As this decade is nearing its conclusion, we take a look at some of the terms that crossed the popularity threshold to enter the Oxford dictionary and became so widespread that they virtually dominated casual and semi-formal public discourse around the world.
The term became popular a few years after the advent of YouTube (2005) but it was officially recognised by the Oxford Dictionary in the year 2016. The definition reads “A person who uploads, produces, or appears in videos on the video-sharing website YouTube.
The phenomenon of getting angry and frustrated as a result of hunger became quite popular last year and was added to the Oxford dictionary in 2019. It defined the term as “bad-tempered or irritable as a result of hunger”. As platforms like Instagram experience an exponential increase in food posts, this ironic term became popular synchronously.
Social media can sometimes become a platform for mocking people and spreading hate. The popular way to do it is in the form of trolls. Although the term has multiple meanings, its relevant meaning in this context was officially recognised in the year 2017. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as “to antagonize (others) online by deliberately posting inflammatory, irrelevant, or offensive comments or other disruptive content”.
With the creation of online streaming platforms like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime, the idea of watching all or multiple episodes in one go has become popular. The term binge-watch is everywhere although it still awaits official recognition.
The world is obsessed with selfies and truly so it took social media by storm after becoming highly popularised from the year 2012. Oxford Dictionary named it the word of the year in 2013 and it is defined as “A photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and shared via social media.” Since the year 2014, the world has begun celebrating a National Selfie Day too.
This immensely popular word still awaits official recognition by the Oxford and Merriam- Webster dictionary. Twitter and Instagram are platforms where hashtags end up creating instant trends.
This term gained popularity with the American multinational taxi company but it increasingly became a part of everyday vocabulary. It was included in the Oxford Dictionary in the year 2015 and is defined as “Denoting an outstanding or supreme example of a particular kind of person or thing”.
The phenomenon of fake news has existed for a long time but was immensely popularised by the 45th and the current president of the United States, Donald Trump. It was introduced in the oxford dictionary in the year 2019 with its definition “False information that is broadcast or published as news for fraudulent or politically motivated purposes.”
This acronym stand “for thank god it’s Friday” and has been used by millennials on social media as a happy declaration for the weekend and break from work. This was introduced in the Oxford dictionary in the year 2018 and it simply defines it as “Thank God (or goodness) It’s Friday.”
The passion of travelling and recording those memories on social media has undergone a revolution in the last decade. The idea of experiencing everything and not missing out on anything has made the concept of a bucket list very handy. In 2013, this term was introduced in the Oxford dictionary with this definition “A number of experiences or achievements that a person hopes to have or accomplish during their lifetime.”
In the era of fast-paced traffic hungry content on all media platforms, the idea of creating something unique, interesting and highly sensational material is as attractive as it is a necessity today. The oxford dictionary introduced this term in 2013 and defined it as “Likely to arouse the interest and attention of the public, either by media coverage or word of mouth”.
The last decade proudly saw the exponential rise in the efforts to fight patriarchy and this term is one of the manifestations of this fight. It was defined as “the explanation of something by a man, typically to a woman, in a manner regarded as condescending or patronizing” by the Oxford dictionary in the year 2018.
Officially this means people who were born in the 1980s or the 1990s. Millennials are associated with a generation of people willing to take risks and undertaking unique and different career paths. Socially they have a distinctive lifestyle as compared to generations before them mainly due to changes in technology.
Making friends is just a click away in the age of social media but so is the act of unfriending someone. Recognised by the Merriam-Webster dictionary in the year 2014, the word is defined as “to remove (someone) from a list of designated friends on a person’s social networking website”. This term is also highly popular in American pop culture and has two movies named on it.
This term gained popularity on social media and is extensively used by cultural journalists to describe healthy male friendships. Recognised as an official word by both the Oxford dictionary and the Merriam Webster dictionary, it is defined as “a close but non-sexual relationship between two men”.
This term has become typically mainstream in the music industry around the globe. Recognised by the Oxford dictionary in the year 2018, this is defined as “Walk or behave in a very confident and arrogant or self-important way.” The Merriam Webster dictionary too recognises it and defines it as “to conduct oneself in an arrogant or superciliously pompous manner; especially: to walk with an air of overbearing self-confidence”
With a million overlapping things thrown at us through the internet, sometimes we experience a complete shutdown and lack of interest. Meh with its official recognition in the year 2015 is defined as “Expressing a lack of interest or enthusiasm.”
With jokes and memes flooding our phones we do end up feeling like “Rolling on the
Floor Laughing” which is the full form of this acronym. This is extensively used on platforms like WhatsApp during informal conversations. Introduced in the Oxford dictionary in the year 2016 “Rolling on the floor laughing (used to convey great amusement”.
The term came into being as a consequence of Britain exiting the European Union dominated the newspapers and other media platforms in the year 2016. The Oxford dictionary defines it as “The withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union”.
The pop culture dances is dominated by twerking which was introduced in the Oxford dictionary in 2015 and is defined as “Dance to popular music in a sexually provocative manner involving thrusting hip movements and a low, squatting stance.”
These cute little shortcuts make our conversations shorter and easier. “A small digital image or icon used to express an idea or emotion” was its definition in the oxford dictionary in 2013.
Widely used on social media as a term to get motivated and increase awareness of one’s surroundings. According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, woke is increasingly used as a byword for social awareness. Global Language Monitor has announced ‘Woke’ as the Top Word of the Year for 2019.
The acronym of “First Lady of the United States” was introduced in the Oxford dictionary in the year 2015. The current first lady Melania Trump uses this acronym for her official Instagram and twitter handles.
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