I’m taking an ill-advised break from paper writing (17-25 pages in the next 6 days?!) to blog because, and pay attention now:
Merriam Webster’s Word of the Year has zeros in it.
Yes, Merriam Webster, esteemed dictionary organization, just announced that its 2007 Word of the Year is “w00t.” With two zeros.
Granted, Merriam Webster’s contest is user-voted and is often riddled with pop culture stuff–“truthiness” won last year, and the two runner-ups were google and facebook, chronologically. Still, I’m pretty sure this is the first time a word containing numbers has ever won.
Society has really come a long way in accepting the web. Just two years ago, for example, all the nominated words were totally legit. It took email god knows how many years to actually make it to the dictionary, and now we’re more or less okay with w00t as Word of the Year while You rocked Time’s Person of the Year? Sweet.
I remember when I was growing up and 1337 was real cool. It was like 7 years ago. Back in the day, I didn’t quite understand what a weird culture I was growing up with or how mainstream it would become. I expected even less that my dilly-dallying on forums would become an integral part of my academic interest, or that it would one day lead to things like organizing conferences about LOLCats. Aww, the internet really is a magical place where dreams come true! On second thought, yikes.
(P.S. Thanks, Carrie, for the heads up!)