'w00t' is WOTY (Word Of The Year)
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.
The other tech-related term on Merriam-Webster "word of the year" list is "Facebook," as a verb.
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