Oxford English Dictionary Deviates From Rules, Declares "Tweet" an Official Word

Sorry to break it to social networking curmudgeons, but the Oxford English Dictionary now officially recognizes "tweet" as a noun and verb in the social networking sense. Such is the power and influence of social networking services like Twitter that not only did OED expand its entry for the word tweet, but it broke its own rules to add the new definitions.

"This breaks at least one one OED rule, namely that a new word needs to be current for ten years before consideration for inclusion. But it seems to be catching on," OED Chief Editor John Simpson said in a statement.

The latest OED updated saw the inclusion of over 1,200 newly revised or expanded words, bringing the total number to over 823,000. Tweet wasn't the only technological term to make the cut. Some other interesting additions include "crowdsourcing," "mouseover," "e-reader," "big data," and "geekery," to name just a few. Like tweet, OED expanded its definition for geekery.

OED Twitter

"The earliest sense of geekery to be included in the OED refers to bizarre or grotesque acts performed at carnivals or circuses (from 1947, although now rare). The OED now includes the more familiar sense (first identified from 1990) referring to behavior typical of a geek – specifically devotion to a particular subject or pursuit which might be regarded as unfashionable or highly technical," OED explains.

So there you have it. Armed with a new arsenal of tech terms, go forth and dominate Scrabble matches with friends and family.