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自分が読んで興味深く感じた英文記事を中心に取り上げる予定です

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今年の単語を振り返ろう

 
今週末のフィナンシャルタイムズで今年の単語を振り返っていました。新しいテクノロジーと英語が全世界で新語を作る原動力となっていると伝えています。

December 19, 2014 11:59 am
#Words of the year
Simon Kuper
Language, driven by social media and texting, is renewing itself faster than ever

昨年今年の単語に選ばれたselfie。これをベースにいろいろなバリエーションが生まれるのも言葉の面白いところですよね。本棚を紹介するshelfieについては以前ブログでも取り上げさせてもらいまいた。

“Selfie” has even inspired a family of words, including “belfie” (portrait of one’s own backside), “shelfie” (portrait of bookcase), and “nelfie” (a naked selfie, sometimes communicated through sexting, ie sexual texting, though sadly not often in my circles).

新技術の広まりによって新しい語も生まれていると指摘していますが、英単語がそのまま他の国にも使われている状況があるようです。何も日本だけの現象ではないようです。

“LOL” (laugh out loud) is one of the family of abbreviations spawned by texting. Other popular ones include IDC (“I don’t care”) and YOLO (“you only live once”, as in, “☺ in Cancún YOLO”). Even French has adopted LOL and YOLO. The Académie française, custodian of the language, does not like either. It recommends replacing LOL with “MDR” (mort de rire, or “dying of laughter”). But try telling young people.

The global advance of tech and English is making languages more alike. One new international word — “nomophobia” in English, nomofobia in Italian, etc — denotes the fear of finding yourself with no mobile phone. “Vape” — to suck on an electronic cigarette — is Oxford Dictionaries’ word of 2014, while in the French vote the runner-up was vapoter, which means the same. Italians now say svapare. (Vaping, incidentally, has necessitated a new term for an old thing: “tobacco cigarette”.)


いつの時代も若者が新しい言葉を生み出し、他が追従するという流れは変わらないのでしょうが、スマホでは文字でのやり取りが中心ですから現代はその傾向がより顕著なのかもしれません。イギリスのキャメロン首相がLOLの意味を勘違いして多用していたというエピソードはアラフォーとしては他人事でないです(苦笑)

Texting and social media are particularly fertile grounds for new words, because they are the biggest forms of written mass communication ever, and they are dominated by young people. (By contrast, the over-thirties rule mainstream media.) The young are coining words faster than ever. Moreover, older people have become more open to these coinages, partly because of tech’s economic prestige. We discovered in 2012 that when the British prime minister David Cameron texted the tabloid newspaper editor Rebekah Brooks, he habitually signed off with “LOL”. He thought it meant “lots of love”. Here was the middle-aged ruling class debasing teen language.

ここで面白かったのは、現代の技術では文字中心ですが、技術が変わるにつれ音声が中心になればまた違ったものが生まれるだろうと言っています。今でも単語ですらなくなってなく、絵文字が今年の単語に選ばれるようになっているのですね。

If you think that’s a decline in standards, then hold tight: languages have begun to abandon alphabets altogether. The shortest correspondence in history was always said to be Victor Hugo’s with his publisher about sales of his book Les Miserables. “?” wrote Hugo. “!” replied the publisher. But that exchange would now be standard. The Global Language Monitor’s word of 2014 is ♥, the emoticon that denotes affection. Meanwhile the Swiss-German word of the year is #, the symbol used in a hashtag on social media. So fertile is tech-based language that Chambers now lists “bashtag” as “a hashtag used for critical or abusive comments”.

This phase of language too shall end. When voice-recognition technology improves, we won’t have to write any more. We’ll just speak into our devices. Already, the WhatsApp messaging app (new verb: “to whatsapp” or, in German, whatsappen) makes it easy to send video or audio rather than text. New tech will again create new language. Sit back and enjoy the fecundity, because YOLO☺.


YOLOが流行しているのをこの記事で知りました。。。Drakeという歌手がYou only live once. That’s the motto, ni - - a Yolo.と歌っています。



FTではThe Global Language Monitor’s word of 2014 is ♥, the emoticon that denotes affection.とemoticonを使っていましたが、当団体の発表ではemojiを使っています。

The Heart ♥ Emoji (for love) is Top Word, Pope Francis topped by Ebola as Top Name, “Hands Up, No Shoot” is Top Phrase

Pope Francis Topped by Ebola for Top Name of 2014

“Hands Up, No Shoot” is the Top Phrase of the Year of 2014 (see below)

AUSTIN, Texas, December 2014 — The Emoji ideograph for Heart (and Love) is the Top Word for 2014 according to the 15th Annual survey of the English language by the the Global Language Monitor. The Heart and Love emoji, emoticon, and variations thereof appear billions of times a day around the world — across languages and cultures. This is the first time an ideograph has captured Word of the Year honors.

The GLM Word, Phrase, and Names of the Year lists are intended to provide a history of each year since 2000 through English-language word usage.

” Each emoji represents an emotion, expression, or state of mind, or a person, place or thing, so much so, that we see the birth of the AlphaBorg or AlphaBit.” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor.


何度も書いている事ですが、英語学習者は基本語の習得・運用力の向上に重きをおくべきだと思っています。ただ、新語は時代の流れを感じるものとして知るのは興味深いことですね。
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