News: Possible New SCRABBLE Words?

Possible New SCRABBLE Words?

QI and ZA.

QI n pl. -S the vital force that in Chinese thought is inherent in all things
ZA n pl. -S a pizza

For over a decade, these words have been used in SCRABBLE play, but not in the US or Canada.  It wasn't until their addition in the Official SCRABBLE Players Dictionary, Fourth Edition (OSPD4) in 2005 that they revolutionized offensive play across the world.

But QI and ZA weren't the only words added to the OSPD4; there were more than 4,000 additions compared to the OSPD3 from 1996.  Internet terms such as BLOGGING, EMAILS, WEBCAMS, and WEBPAGES finally made it, along with these NEWBIES:

APPLET n pl. -S a computer program for a simple task
BATGIRL n pl. -S a girl who minds baseball equipment [no... not the superhero]
BLOG n pl. -S a website containing a personal journal
BURKA n pl. -S a long loose outer garment worn by some Muslim women
CHIANTI n pl. -S a dry red wine [wine of choice of Hannibal "The Cannibal" Lecter]
COKELIKE adj resembling coke (a carbon fuel) [no... not the "carbon"ated soda]
EARBUD n pl. -S a small earphone
EBOOK n pl. -S a device for reading books in electronic format
EMAIL v -ED, -ING, -S to send a message to by computer
GELCAP n pl. -S a tablet coated with gelatin
KLICK n pl. -S a kilometer [the US military had been using this for decades]
NEWBIE n pl. -S a newcomer
PERV n pl. -S one who has been perverted
QADI n pl. -S a cadi (Muslim judge)
VID n pl. -S a video
WEBCAM n pl. -S a camera used for transmitting live images over the World Wide Web
WEBPAGE n pl. -S a single document on the World Wide Web
ZINE n pl. -S a magazine
ZIPLOCK adj having a groove and ridge that form a tight seal when joined
ZZZ interj — used to suggest the sound of snoring
*See the complete list (which includes omitted words) by the National SCRABBLE Association.

With our ever changing contemporary culture and further technical advancements, one day there will be a need for a new SCRABBLE Dictionary—the Fifth Edition—the OSPD5.

Merriam-Webster, who publishes the SCRABBLE Dictionary, is always on the lookout for new words in our culture.  Words are constantly tracked by citation editors from all dictionaries, and once the word is cited enough, it becomes eligible for consideration in SCRABBLE.  See Merriam-Webster's FAQ on word determination.

Also good to know—when there is a common foreign word that has no literal English translation, that foreign word becomes good; think TACO and the possible upcoming SUDOKU.

Sometimes words actually make it into the SCRABBLE Dictionary, then are removed in a later publication, and then favored again for consideration into a newer version.  STETSON is a good example, because it's used more commonly as a generic term.  It was added, then removed due to a trademark claim by the Stetson hat company.  Although STETSON hasn't made it back into the OSPD yet, it has been admitted into the OWL2, so it's sure to be in the upcoming OSPD5.

John D. Williams Jr, Executive Director of the NSA, acknowledges that all of this can be obscure to most people, "but if you love words and language, it's pretty wild stuff."

But when this new SCRABBLE Dictionary comes out (whenever that may be), which words will make their first appearance?

There are two lists here.  The first list are words that have been rumored to make it into the next edition, and the second list are words I would like to see added.  My "WISHLIST" is pretty small right now, but when I think of them, I'll add them.  What words are you looking forward to?  And what words would you like to see?

PS: I will continually update these lists, when necessary.

RUMORED NEW SCRABBLE WORDS

BLING n/pl flashy expensive jewelry
DOCUSOAP n pl. -S a television documentary with soap opera elements
DUMPSTER n pl. -S a large trash receptacle [amazing this one isn't already in the dictionary]
EMMY n pl. EMMYS nickname for image orthicon (a camera tube used in television)
FRISBEE n pl. -S a plastic disk for tossing between players
GOOGLE v GOOGLED, GOOGLING, GOOGLES to search the World Wide Web
HIMBO n pl. -BOS or -BOES an attractive but unintelligent man
JELLO n pl. JELLOS a fruity gelatin dessert
KLEENEX n pl. -ES a paper cleansing tissue
PODCAST n pl. -S a downloadable digital audio program on the Internet
PREGGARS adj preggers (pregnant)
REGIFT v -ED, -ING, -S give to someone else
REGIFTER n pl. -S one who regifts
SUDOKU n pl. -S a Japanese numerical logic puzzle
TASE v TASED, TASING, TASES to shoot with a taser
TASER n pl. -S a gun that fires electrical darts
UNIBROW n pl. -S a single eyebrow formed from two UNIBROWED adj
VASELINE n pl. -S petroleum jelly
VELCRO n pl. -ROS or -ROES a fabric fastener
VELCRO v -ED, -ING, -ROS or -ROES to velcro together
VLOG n pl. VLOGS a blog that contains video
WEBISODE n pl. -S a short television show on the Internet

WISHLIST OF NEW SCRABBLE WORDS

ACAI n pl. -S a purple berrylike fruit from a tall palm tree
CINEPLEX n pl. -ES a portmanteau word for cinema and multiplex
GOJI n pl. -S a wolfberry (small tart Asian berry)
KWYJIBO n pl. -S a big, dumb, balding North American ape, with no chin (from The Simpsons)
OLLIE v OLLIED, OLLIEING, OLLIES to perform a skateboarding jump trick
REPOST v -ED, -ING, -S to display, announce, or send something again [I do this often]
RINGTONE n pl. -S an alert on a cell phone triggered by an incoming call
SLOWCORE n/pl subgenre of rock music, usually with minimalist arrangements (ex. Low)
SPYWARE n/pl malicious software from the Internet
TEXT
v TEXTED, TEXTING, TEXTS to send a message via a mobile phone
VOG
n pl. VOGS volcanic smog
WISHLIST n pl. -S a list of desired items

Sources: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, John D. Williams Jr (SCRABBLE News #232)

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6 Comments

what? there's a plural form of "qi"? that doesn't compute.

There's a lot in the dictionary that doesn't seem right, but nonetheless... there is a QIS in the OSPD4.

I don't understand why you like the word wishlist.. What's so great about it? I like the idea of ollie being in the scrabble dictionary, though. Seriously, tenebrism, Why don't you write me a response so I can know why you like the word wishlist. please. :)

I feel that wishlist should be a "closed" compound noun, because it's used abundantly across the web and in homes. Anytime anyone creates a saved list for future purchases on a web store (or in their head), it's more likely referred to as a "wish list", "wish-list" or simply "wishlist". I feel that something so common should not be omitted from the dictionary.

Usually, when a compound noun becomes closed in English, it's because the two words that make up the whole are monosyllabic and have been around for a long time. Wish and list meet both of these criteria.

Think "toothpaste", "seafood", "wallpaper", "haircut", "feedback", "witchcraft", "airplane", "headache", "springtime", "chainsaw", "backyard", "schoolhouse", and so on.

A few dictionaries have begun listing "wishlist" as a word in itself. A few online dictionaries have begun connecting "wishlist" to "wish list". It's just a matter of time before the whole world adopts the clean-cut version. Oh, and "clean-cut" would be a hyphenated compound noun, one I would wish to stay hyphenated and not become "closed". :)

Great site, I'm shocked that I missed it 4 so long.

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