An amusing list of the most current colloquial words has been included in the August addition to the online version of the Oxford English Dictionary. They are words that have been gathered by a system of online sourcing and by the Reading Programme, with the aim of finding fashionable new words and monitoring changing trends in the English language.

These words include the noun clickbait, a means of drawing attention and visitors to a website, the popular adjective amazeballs, the verb mansplain, meaning having a man explain something to you in a condescending manner, and the acronym YOLO, i.e. ‘you only live once’.

They are a mixture of words that have been brought about by the change in the way we communicate and by other media influences. Limited character spaces on some social media websites mean that words get shortened, and shortened words are easier and quicker to type. Other words are influenced by pop and rap music or by reality television programmes.

The English language, already boasting of a wide vocabulary, is a fast developing language. It is conceivable that some of these words could find their way into the more formal, printed English Oxford Dictionary in the near future, following in the footsteps of hashtag and selfie which were added in June.

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