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Top 10 Words Of 2007


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'w00t' Tops the List of Words of 2007

by Stephanie Reitz, Associated Press Writer

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Richard Gere and Julia Roberts in 'Pretty Woman.'

Roberts character said 'Woot, woot, woot!' in this

Polo scene from the movie.

SPRINGFIELD, Massachusetts -- Expect cheers among hardcore online game enthusiasts when they learn Merriam-Webster's Word of the Year. Or, more accurately, expect them to "w00t." "W00t," a hybrid of letters and numbers used by gamers as an exclamation of happiness or triumph, topped all other terms in the Springfield-based dictionary publisher's online poll for the word that best sums up 2007.

Merriam-Webster's president, John Morse, said "w00t" was an ideal choice because it blends whimsy and new technology. "It shows a really interesting thing that's going on in language. It's a term that's arrived only because we're now communicating electronically with each other," Morse said.

Gamers commonly substitute numbers and symbols for the letters they resemble, Morse says, creating what they call "l33t speak"

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Top 10 Words of 2007

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.........'Merriam-Webster Dictionary'

If you had to pick a single notable word that stands out in your mind from 2007, what would be it? It's okay, take your time. This probably isn't the sort of question you ponder on a daily basis -- or perhaps ever.

But, among dictionary-types, it's a (mildly) prestigious honor to be nominated word of this year, and this year that honor has been granted to a string of four characters that many would not even consider a word in the first place.

That thing is 'w00t,' spelled w-zero-zero-t and pronounced "whoot." It's an exclamation of joy that originated in the various realms of offline role-playing games like Dungeons and Dragons, where it originally meant "Wow, loot!"

It has since gained use in online RPGs (role-playing games) like 'World of Warcraft,' and from there has gone on to conquer the world -- at least according to Merriam-Webster, which handled the nomination. The zeros were added in to make it cooler for the kiddies who like numbers that look like letters.

Other, perhaps more stuffy, literary types believe that the nomination is just as bogus as the word itself, but last year's Colbert-inspired word of the year, "truthiness," isn't exactly grammatically correct either. Whether it's a real word or not we don't care, but we can't help but appreciate the amazing rise of a little word that grew from basement D&D play all the way up to common parlance.

Thousands of people took part in the search for Merriam-Webster's "Word of the Year for 2007," and the vast majority of chose a small word that packs a pretty big punch. The word they selected hasn't found its way into a regular Merriam-Webster Dictionary yet

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