Thursday December 20, 2007
W00t - an interjection, used to convey excitement. And now, says the Merriam-Webster dictionary, 2007's word of the year - albeit one coined at least 15 years ago by early internet users. But with this development, internet slang, verb-acronyms, creative misspellings, portmanteux and joyfully painful grammar, is officially no longer confined to life online. A simple guide to some other popular terms from the geektionary includes:
l33t: the internet slang language to which "w00t" belongs. Derived from "elite", and created by talkboard users, who, wishing to discuss oft-banned topics without getting caught by search engines, used punctuation and numbers to replace letters.
teh: the (letters are transposed in deliberate misspellings, the dangers of speed-typing lightheartedly feeding into the lexicon).
b0rked: broken, usually beyond hope of repair. And more fun to say than "broken".
suxxor, and its opposite, roxxor: something that "sucks or "rocks". As in: "d00d! This pizza is teh roxxor!!!1!1!" (Overpunctuation obligatory, ironicised by the inclusion of "mistyped" numbers)
WTF, Mate?: Abbreviating "what the fuck?!" isn't new, but this phrase's online usage spread after The End Of The World - an online animation featuring a bemused kangaroo caught up in nuclear war (googling "wtf mate" will take you straight to it).
LOL: Laughing out loud. See also ROFL (pronounced: roffle), rolling on the floor laughing. But since these are generally exaggerations, a new phrase, popularised by comedian Dimitri Martin, LQTM (laughing quietly to myself), is thought more honest.LOLcats: much of the terrrible English currently littering the web can be traced to the phenomenon of LOLcats (see icanhascheezburger.com) - images of cute critters with comedy captions written to bizarre grammatical rules. Main rule: LOLcats love oversimplified grammar, can't spell, prefer "z" over "s", and like cheezburger.
K Thnx Bai: How a satisfied LOLcat ends a conversation. No longer confined to LOLcats: peeplz too. And, at their current speed, expect Merriam-Webster to pick up on it in about 16 years.