New words come into the English language every day. According to Global Language Monitor, around 5,400 new words emerge every year. However, only about 1,000 are in such widespread use that they make it into the dictionary.

It should come as no surprise that writers are behind many of these lexical innovations. Shakespeare was a master neologist, that is, a master of new words. He was responsible for many of the new words of his time. Fast forward to today, how do new words come into our vocabulary, and how important is it that we use them regularly?

How do new words come about?

New technology, social media, and new trends bring about new words, new phrases, new slogans, and new slang. Social media, for example, is responsible for many of the new words that are now part of the English language. Similarly, new technology also plays a massive role in bringing new words into our everyday use. If you need English for work or work in a global environment where people speak English daily to clients and colleagues, you need to be up to date with these new terms.

Parents with teenagers are already ahead of the game as they are all familiar with this new vocabulary. Without teenagers at home, you need to familiarize yourself with these expressions to understand what your coworkers, especially the younger ones, are discussing. Otherwise, listening to their discussions can seem like listening to an entirely new language.

English Dictionaries include New Words introduced into the English language.

Here are some new informal words that should already be part of your vocabulary if you spend a lot of time online or on social media:

  • Selfie = to take a picture of yourself with your own camera
  • Unfriend = to remove someone from your social media friend list
  • FOMO = fear of missing out
  • TLDR = too long; didn’t read
  • LOL = laugh out loud
  • DM = direct message
  • First world problems= a trivial or minor problem of little significance
  • Facepalm = bringing your palm to your face in a gesture of embarrassment, disbelief, or exasperation
  • Netiquette = the acceptable way of communicating online
  • Screenager = a teenager who spends a lot of time online
  • MOOC = massive open online course = free, easily accessible online courses

Here are some more formal words for more Business-English related discussions:

  • Post = the year after, post-Covid, post-lockdown, post-2020
  • Net Zero= achieving a balance between emissions that are produced and those that are removed from the atmosphere
  • In-person= Conducting an event that is face-to-face rather than on screen
  • Patient Zero= a term used to describe the first human infected by disease at the beginning of an outbreak
  • Binge-watching= when you watch several episodes of a series one after the other
  • Game-changer= an event, idea, or procedure that dramatically changes how something is being done at present
  • Circuit breaker= an automatic halt in trading on the stock market after a significant decline

Reading the News Online Helps to Expand Your Vocabulary and Gives you Discussion Opportunities with Colleagues.

Reading the news online and listening to current events help you keep your finger on the pulse (keeps you aware of the latest events and breakthroughs). Discussing topics with global colleagues and clients using the correct vocabulary will only illustrate how skillful you are in English.

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