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OMG, LOL enter Oxford English Dictionary

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A man reading the Oxford English Dictionary

© PA Images / Ian Nicholson

OMG, LOL and FYI are among the latest additions made to the Oxford English Dictionary in a new update.

The online edition revealed that it had selected a "number of noteworthy initialisms" for publication. The latest three, used widely in online and text speech, join previous entries IMHO, TMI and BFF.

"Of course in such a context initialisms are quicker to type than the full forms, and (in the case of text messages, or Twitter, for example) they help to say more in media where there is a limit to a number of characters one may use in a single message," the OED said in a statement. "OMG and LOL are found outside of electronic contexts, however - in print, and even in spoken use where there often seems to be a bit more than simple abbreviation going on."

However the OED insisted that the abbreviations are not just associated with a younger generation and revealed that research has unearthed former uses.

"OMG is from a personal letter from 1917; the letters LOL had a previous life, starting in 1960, denoting an elderly woman [as 'little old lady'] and the entry for FYI, for example, shows it originated in the language of memoranda in 1941," they revealed.

A surprise new entry also came from the heart symbol '♥'. Referenced "as a symbol for the verb love", the heart has become widely associated with the 'I ♥ NY' tourism campaign.

Meanwhile, the term WAG - used to collectively describe the wives and girlfriends of footballers - will also enter the collection, following its first cited use by the Sunday Telegraph in 2002.

"It is remarkable to see how much the environment has changed over the ten years since the OED first went online," OED's chief editor John Simpson said.

Other new entries include: muffin top, dotbomb, non-dom, tragic [when used to define someone said to be boring or socially inept] and yuck factor .

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