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The Oxford dictionary’s new words are amazeballs—and a hot mess of clickbait listicle douchebaggery

AP Photo/Caleb Jones
Someday, “amazeballs” may make the cut for the print edition too.
  • Adam Pasick
By Adam Pasick

Senior Editor

This article is more than 2 years old.

Oxford Dictionaries Online, the sister publication of the more famous Oxford English Dictionary, has a knack for finding and codifying the latest online language trends, including five words and phrases in the headline above that were added for August 2014.

Oxford University Press has a much higher bar for words to be included in the OED. But the ODO decides which words to add by relying on the automated Oxford English Corpus, a collection of documents sourced online, and the Reading Programme, an international network of volunteers who are on the lookout for new words, meanings, and other language trends. The publisher explains:

We continually monitor the Corpus and the Reading Programme to track new words coming into the language: when we have evidence of a new term being used in a variety of different sources (not just by one writer) it becomes a candidate for inclusion in one of our dictionaries. For every new dictionary or online update we assess all the most recent terms that have emerged and select those which we judge to be the most significant or important and those which we think are likely to stand the test of time.

Here are a selection of August’s new ODO words and phrases, starting with the ones used in our headline:

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