Snap! 'Selfie' becomes International Word of the Year
Oxford Dictionaries' shortlist also included bitcoin, showrooming, twerk and schmeat
Computerworld - If you posted selfies on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter this past year, you helped make "selfie" the Oxford Dictionaries' international Word of the Year for 2013.
Selfie, which means a photo taken of oneself, usually with a smartphone, and posted on a social network, was called out this year because of its sheer popularity.
"Using the Oxford Dictionaries language research program, which collects around 150 million words of current English in use each month, we can see a phenomenal upward trend in the use of selfie in 2013, and this helped to cement its selection as Word of the Year," said Judy Pearsall, editorial director for Oxford Dictionaries, in a statement.
Actually, a study conducted by editors at Oxford Dictionaries showed that the frequency of the word "selfie" in the English language increased 17,000% since this time in 2012.
"Selfie can actually be traced back to 2002 when it was used in an Australian online forum," Oxford Dictionaries noted in a blog .
According to the dictionaries' editors, this was the first known usage of the word selfie, "Um, drunk at a mates 21st, I tripped ofer [sic] and landed lip first (with front teeth coming a very close second) on a set of steps. I had a hole about 1cm long right through my bottom lip. And sorry about the focus, it was a selfie."
The word gained momentum throughout the English-speaking world in 2013, evolving from a social media buzzword to mainstream shorthand.
Dictionary editors also noted that the popularity of the word "selfie" can be seen in the number of "spin-off terms" that have cropped up. For instance, a helfie is a picture of one's hair and a belfie is a picture of one's posterior.
And a welfie is a workout selfie, while a drelfie is a drunken selfie.
Other contenders for the International Word of the Year included bitcoin, a digital currency, and showrooming, meaning to visit a store to see a product before buying it online at a lower price.
Also making the short list were twerk, which means to dance provocatively in a low, squatting position, along with binge-watch, which means to watch multiple episodes back to back of a television program; and schmeat, a derogatory term for synthetically produced meat from biological tissue.
This article, Snap! 'Selfie' becomes International Word of the Year, was originally published at Computerworld.com.
Sharon Gaudin covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter at @sgaudin, on Google+ or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed . Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read more about Mobile Apps in Computerworld's Mobile Apps Topic Center.
- Gartner Magic Quadrant for Mobile Application Development Platforms As unprecedented numbers of enterprises build mobile applications, the mobile application development platform market continues to grow and evolve rapidly.
- The Total Economic Impact of IBM's Worklight Platform Mobile is the fastest growing consumer technology in history. As enterprises build apps to engage these new users they are facing increased complexity...
- Improve Your Mobile Application Security with IBM Worklight IBM® Worklight helps organizations extend their business across multiple mobile devices. It provides an open, comprehensive and advanced mobile application platform to help...
- Unlock the Value of Enterprise Mobility Download this guide and learn how to manage the secure deployment of enterprise mobile apps and data, while still encouraging the levels of...
- It's Chaos Out There Worried about your mobile apps? You should be; it's chaos out there. Check out this humorous video and see if you can recognize...
Our new weekly Consumerization of IT newsletter covers a wide range of trends including BYOD, smartphones, tablets, MDM, cloud, social and what it all means for IT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!