Mwahahaha! The dictionary is changing.
The Oxford Dictionary online has added widely used slang including “mwahahaha” and “ridic” and taken out words that are no longer in use such as brabble, which appears to be an officially dead word. According to Webster’s 1828 dictionary, brabble meant “A broil; a clamorous contest; a wrangle.”
“I want us to not lose our English language to slang,” Jeanne Ivy, psychology professor at Tyler Junior College, said. “Slang is fine in its proper context, but I don’t want a student to send me an essay in slang.”
Our dictionary should grow with our words. People need to understand what the words mean when someone is talking or writing or texting to them. The concern seems to be that the lines of when to use slang and when to use proper vocabulary need to be drawn.
“Personally, I am not crazy about the fact that people aren’t learning vocabulary like they used to,” said Ivy. “They don’t learn proper vocabulary because they spend so much time in slang.”
TJC sophomore communications/public relations major, Mackenzie Aylor doesn’t really use slang except for LOL, meaning laugh out loud, and BRB, which means be right back, but she understands the need to add widely used slang words to the dictionary especially for the older generation that isn’t as savvy.
“If it’s going to be incorporated in your language, I don’t think it’s a bad idea to put it (slang) in there,” Aylor said.
“It (slang) becomes a code at least across generational lines,” Sarah Harrison, English professor and department chair, said. “It’s probably a good idea because, if we hear things, we can look them up. But it should at least be labeled as slang.”
As for the removal of unused words, Aylor said, “ Maybe the dictionary isn’t the right place for those words anymore.”
Student Life Editor