OMG, LOL and FYI enter Oxford English Dictionary
OMG, LOL and FYI, phrases normally used on BBM, a text or Skype have officially made it into the Oxford English Dictionary.
“For the March 2011 release of OED Online, we have selected for publication a number of noteworthy initialisms,” says the publishers of the OED. “Abbreviations consisting of the initial letters of a name or expression. Some of these—such as OMG [OMG int. (and n.) and adj.]: ‘Oh my God’ (or sometimes ‘gosh’, ‘goodness’, etc.) and LOL [LOL int. and n./2]: ‘laughing out loud’—are strongly associated with the language of electronic communications (email, texting, social networks, blogs, and so on).”
The words join They join other entries of this sort: IMHO (‘in my humble opinion’) [IMHO at I n./1], TMI (‘too much information’) [TMI at T n.], and BFF (‘best friends forever’) [BFF at B n.], among others.
OED cites that the intention is usually to signal an informal, gossipy mode of expression, and perhaps parody the level of unreflective enthusiasm or overstatement that can sometimes appear in online discourse, while at the same time marking oneself as an ‘insider’ au fait with the forms of expression associated with the latest technology.
But if you thought it was in because “that’s what all the kids use” you should think again. According to the OED, it’s your grandfather and grandma that are more likely to know what you’re talking about:
“Our first quotation for OMG is from a personal letter from 1917; the letters LOL had a previous life, starting in 1960, denoting an elderly woman (or ‘little old lady’; see LOL n./1); and the entry for FYI [FYI phr., adj., and n.], for example, shows it originated in the language of memoranda in 1941.”
OMG is so last century it seems. If you want to get down with the kids you have to say OMLG these days – Oh My Lady Gaga.
What tech word would you like to see enter the OED?