Does your bezzy have lolz when you obvs try to put a ridic word down on the Scrabble board? Well, thanx to the Collins Official Scrabble Words dictionary, you’ll be the one twerking in celebration when you rack up a load of points.
The dictionary has today added 6,500 new words to the popular board game’s lexicon, in the first update since 2011. These will be added to the existent 250,000 words on the official approval list.
The new words reflect changes in language used in modern society – from slang terms (including ‘ridic’, ‘tuneage’, ‘lolz’ and ‘cakehole’), social media-inspired words (such as ‘hashtag’, ‘sexting’ and ‘facetime’) and words used with increasing frequency in our culture (‘devo’, in reference to the devolution proposals discussed during the Scottish referendum). Additions also include “onomatopoeic interjections” such as ‘eew’ (6 points) and ‘grr’ (4 points).
Helen Newstead, head of language content at Collins, “Dictionaries have always included formal and informal English, but it used to be hard to find printed evidence of the use of slang words.”
“Now people use slang in social media posts, tweets, blogs, comments, text messages – you name it – so there’s a host of evidence for informal varieties of English that simply didn’t exist before.”
Is this cold blooded murder of the English tongue? Many language purists seem to think so, and are up in arms about the new additions.
“A lot of tournament players are not particularly happy about the new words that are being included,” Sue Bowman, membership secretary of the British Association of Scrabble Players, told The Telegraph.
Bowman, who is a former south west Scrabble champion, said the words “seem very artificial.” She sees the move as a “huge marketing ploy” by Collins publishers but added: “as a Scrabble player, some of the words are going to be very, very useful. You don’t have to like them to use them.”
While linguistic purists might argue against the changes, those in the support camp might say that language itself is a fluid concept. Shakespeare invented over 1,700 commonly-used words by merging two together, adding prefixes and coining entirely new ones including: ‘champion’, ‘impartial’, ‘advertising’ and ‘fashionable’, to name but a few. You might look at that list in amazement, but Shakespeare invented that word, too.
Not all the additions are modern words, though. The Yiddish slang word ‘schvitz’, meaning ‘to sweat’ will now earn you a whopping 24 points, and foreign words including cinq (the French number five – worth 15 points) have also been included.
The comedian, Gyles Brandreth, who founded the National Scrabble Championship in 1971, is in supports the new words, saying: “I think it adds to the richness,” he said. “The truth is that words from India, Africa and the Far East are enriching our language as is urban slang. I advocate learning a new word every day of your life as a way of keeping the mind supple and young. So ‘yolo’ – or ‘you only live once’.”
We think the newbs (9 points) are rather fun, and shoutout (11 points) to the Collins team for what we can only describe as an absolute game changer.
Here's a list of some of the words we will be adding to the Scrabble board...
Shizzle - American rap slang meaning 'sure'. (18 points)
Cakehole - mouth (17 points)
Bezzy - best friend (18 points)
Cazh - casual (18 points)
Lolz - having a laugh (13 points)
Obvs - obviously (9 points)
Ridic - ridiculous (8 points)
Thanx - (15 points)
Twerking - type of dance involving rapid hip movement (16 points)
Tuneage - music (8 points)
Cakehole - mouth (17 points)
Newb - newbie (9 points)
Shoutout - a mention, credit, typically made over the radio or during a live performance (11 points)
Sexting - practice of sending sexually explicit text messages (15 points)
Hashtag - a word or phrase preceded by a hashmark on Twitter, used to denote the topic of a post (14 points)
Tweep - person who uses Twitter (10 points)
Facetime - talking with someone via the Apple FaceTime application (15 points)
Eew - exclamation of disgust (6 points)
Grr - interjection expressing anger or annoyance (4 points)
Yeesh - interjection used to express frustration (11 points)
FOR THE BIG POINTS:
Emoji - digital icon used in electronic communication (14 points)
Schvitz - to sweat (24 points)
Checkbox - small clickable box on a computer screen (28 points)
Images: Rex Features