How Does a Word Get Into the Dictionary? - Writer's Digest

How Does a Word Get Into the Dictionary?

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It's not uncommon for 1,500–2,000 new words to be added to the dictionary every year—and while most additions we barely register ("cold turkey," "meet-cute"), others ("FOMO," "hella," "ICYMI") can seem less … dictionary-y. To find out just how words nab the high honor of being dictionaried, we went to the pros at Merriam-Webster. The process, it turns out, is not all that complicated.


This infographic is part of Merriam-Webster’s series on slang in the dictionary. To read the article that accompanies this piece, click here.

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Baihley Grandison is the assistant editor of Writer's Digest and a freelance writer. Follow her on Twitter @baihleyg, where she mostly tweets about writing (Team Oxford Comma!), food (HUMMUS FOR PRESIDENT, PEOPLE), and Random Conversations With Her Mother.