Common Words That Didn’t Exist 20 Years Ago

  1. Blog

In 1999, blogging became so commonplace, that it was strange if you didn’t write a blog. This is the year that Peter Merholz shortened ‘weblog’ as a joke. The website, Jargon Spout picked up on it and spread the word’s usage from there. In 2004, the word blog became Merriam Webster’s Word of the Year.

Blog | How Africa News

  1. Google

Hardly a day will go by amongst computer users, during which the word ‘Google’ will not be used – either as a noun or a verb. It didn’t become an official word until 2006 but was first referred to on TV in an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  

Google | How Africa News

  1. Bromance

The non-sexual relationship term, a portmanteau created by combining the words brother and romance, was coined by Dave Carnie in the skateboard magazine Big Brother.

Bromance | How Africa News

  1. Cyberstalking

Cyberstalking has become so commonplace that it is barely considered shameful. It’s the modern version of climbing a tree with a pair of binoculars, except it is a lot easier to do, more secretive, and more revealing.

Bullying | How Africa News

  1. Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying is different from cyberstalking in that it is conducted to intentionally hurt someone.

Cyberbullying | How Africa News

  1. Muggle

The term is thought to have first been used in J.K. Rowlings’ Harry Potter series of books but has since been used to describe someone who cannot adequately perform certain activities or tasks. It was added to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2003, although rumour has it the word was used in the 1920s to refer to marijuana.

Muggle | How Africa News

  1. Staycation

The word staycation first appeared in print in 2003. In 2005, the term was used in the show Corner Gas, and by 2008, it was being commonly used (and practised), due to the high petrol prices. In 2009 it was added to the Merriam-Webster dictionary.

Staycation | How Africa News

  1. Sexting

Sexting was first used in 2004 when it was described as ‘the new phone sex’.

Sexting | How Africa News

  1. Upcycle

This portmanteau of up and recycle means ‘to use discarded objects to create a product that’s actually of a higher quality or value’ and was first used in 1994 by Thornton Kay. It is now a movement to change the way we as consumers live and focus on reusing things that otherwise would have been discarded.

Upcycle | How Africa News

  1. Mashup

People have been combining songs as early as the 1950s, but the word mashup wasn’t created until the turn of the millennium. Mashup DJs and clubs are now popular the world over.

Mashup | How Africa News

Source: The South African

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