Sunday, September 13, 2015

OED vs Urban Dictionary

By +Sue Casa

Every year the Oxford English Dictionary inducts new words into it's pages so that it can remain relevant and up to date with societal changes. However, this year the OED's online dictionary has gone way too far with it's new additions, lowering itself to the level of the other popular online word repository,

Oxford Dictionary vs Urban Dictionary
Oxford vs Urban - not just a battle of shoes
The difference between the two dictionaries is that Urban Dictionary is full of user submissions, while the OED consists of words assembled by the foremost lexicographers of the English speaking world. 

So what are the new words causing uproar in the world of online definitions? Some of them come from TXT speak and others are simple daily slang, either American or English. A couple of them are already so commonplace in our language that I was surprised that they were not already in the dictionary. Here are some of the new additions.
awesomesauce, beer o'clock, bitch face, brain fart, butt-dial, fur baby, MacGyver, manspreading, mic drop, mkay, rage-quit, rly, YouTuber
Compare those to what was added last year:
amazeballs, binge-watch, FML, neckbeard, sideboob, SMH, and YOLO
We covered the new additions from 5 years ago HERE. Compare these words above to the new word addition in the 1765 edition of Dr. Samuel Johnson's 'A Dictionary of the English Language', to see how the quality of the English language is slipping.

Spendthrift n. a person who spends possessions or money extravagantly or wastefully; prodigal.

When is the last time you heard someone use the word Spendthrift?

While I appreciate that more archaic entities have to do drastic things to remain relevant in today's society, adding common slang and gibberish to the book which made the English language great is not a good move. Neither is charging £200 to subscribe to the online OED when there are numerous free options which are almost as comprehensive and well written.

Shame on you OED, try harder next time.

And for those of you who enjoy words, here is a gift from us to you. A word search containing all of the new words that we mentioned from last Oxford English Dictionary update.

OED new word word search
This shouldn't take more than 2 minutes
What was your favorite new word? How many of the new words are already commonplace in your vocabulary? Which word would you banish from the English language for eternity? Which word absolutely has to go in the OED next time? Share in the comments section below.

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