Make way for new words…

Oxford English Dictionary

Oxford English Dictionary (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Oxford English Dictionaryhas an insatiable appetite for new entries: Every three months, it expands its inventory with dozens of words. A recent newspaper article, however, sensationalized recent acquisitions by selectively announcing a pile of pop-culture-inspired terms, missing the whole point of a dictionary.

The OED, like most other dictionaries, is descriptivist: It describes the state of the language. Some descriptivist resources weigh in on the formality of given entries, or their acceptability by a panel of language experts. The procedure for approving candidate terms for inclusion varies, as dictionary staffs differ on how long a term should have been in general circulation before it earns the stamp of approval.

Read more here…