It's official: OMG and LOL are no longer just time-saving shorthands. They're real English.


In a decision that may drive English teachers across the nation to despair, the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), the venerable last word on proper language, has embraced the tech world and added several abbreviations — or "initialisms" — to its new online edition.


Those include OMG (Oh my god), LOL (laughing out loud), TMI (too much information), FYI (for your information) and BFF (best friends forever).

其中就包括OMG (Oh my god/额滴神啊), LOL (laughing out loud/放声大笑), TMI (too much information/说得太多), FYI (for your information/仅供参考) 以及BFF (best friends forever/永远的好朋友)。

The OED explained the decision extensively in an online statement and pointed out many of these "noteworthy initialisms...are strongly associated with the language of electronic communications."


The OED explains that shorthands such as LOL and OMG have gone beyond just saving space and acquired nuanced meanings of their own, with "a bit more than simple abbreviation going on."


"The intention is usually to signal an informal, gossipy mode of expression, and perhaps parody the level of unreflexive 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," the OED said.


But some abbreviations have been around for longer than expected. Researchers at OED discovered that OMG appeared in a personal letter from 1917 (with the same meaning as now), and the letters LOL had a "previous life" in the 1960s, when they signified little old lady.

不过其中有些缩略语的历史由来已久。牛津英语词典表示OMG第一次是在1917年一封私人信件中出现,意思同现在一样,而LOL在1960年代的前身却是小老太太little old lady的意思。