A colleague just sent me a very interesting link advertising a translation app for people above the age of fifty. Saga insurance company is offering an app that helps the +50 crowd decipher hundreds of the neologisms that British teenagers currently use in their personal conversations and digital communications. According to Saga, ‘Woteva’ (for the uninitiated, a teen version of whatever used as a catch-all phrase often signifying reluctant agreement), is an app that enables users to search or scroll through a teen slang dictionary of 500 words. It also features an audio function for many of the words “enunciated in perfect RP” (that is to say in “received pronunciation” — the Queen’s (or King’s) English, Oxford English or BBC English).
The following are just a few of the very apt terms that teenagers have invented recently:
Dissociative Facebook identity disorder – Someone whose Facebook image and real life image are completely at odds.
Googleheimer’s disease – What has happened to you when you know what you want to search for on Google, but by the time you reach your computer you have completely forgotten what it was.
Hiberdating – Someone who suddenly drops all their other friends when they start dating.
Powerpuff presentation – A presentation that is full of animation and fancy graphics but completely devoid of any substance.
Screen saver – The blank and sometimes blissful expression that sometimes comes across a person’s face when daydreaming.
I’m frankly surprised that none these were nominated for “Word of the Year.”