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Web Lingo Finds A Place In Chambers Dictionary

A significant amount of new words added to the iconic Chambers Dictionary have been influenced by the World Wide Web, highlighting the impact the internet is having on English language.

Words like cloud, tweet and paywall were included in the 12th edition of the Chambers Dictionary, which contains 620,000 words. OMG, which is short for ‘Oh My God!’ popular on online social networks, also made it to the dictionary along with BFF, which stands for Best Friends Forever.

Social networking seems to have influenced the update to the dictionary with words like ‘defriend’ and ‘unfriend’, used for Facebook, were also part of the dictionary which was first published in 1901.

David Swarbrick, managing director at Chambers Harrap, the publisher of the dictionary, believes that most of the words that made it to the dictionary are inspired by today’s young generation.

“I think young people are probably the most creative agents for new words because they’re not held back by convention. Young people are the real artists of the language and a dictionary should reflect that,” Swarbrick said.

“This is why we would, for example, put in words such as “bromance”, because we feel there is widespread use of these,” he added.