Twitter users put 'adorkable' into Collins

Twitter users put 'adorkable' into Collins

"Adorkable" will be added to the next edition of the Collins English Dictionary, after being suggested and voted for by Twitter users.

Collins used data from the microblogging site to find a range of neologisms, before asking users to vote for the one that should be included in the 12th edition of the dictionary.

Adorkable is defined as: "adj slang socially inept or unfashionable in a charming or endearing way [blend of ADORABLE and DORK]."

The word picked up 30% of the vote, beating "felfie", a selfie taken by a farmer which was promoted by the farming community, and "fatberg", an accumulation of grease clogging a sewage system. The other shortlisted words were "nomakeupselfie" and "gaybourhood".

Collins said that "adorkable" was first used on Twitter in March 2007, peaking is usage in January 2012, before settling into regular usage.

Andrew Freeman, associate publishing director for Collins, said: "We are excited about using Twitter because it offers open, accessible public data for us to monitor and analyse through its APIs. Twitter is a news site with robust patterns of usage and reactions to events and growing movements which lend themselves to language development and invention. Twitter's limit of 140 characters per message puts a focus on language, meaning users have to come up with new words and language to make the most of the platform."

He added: "This is the first activity of its kind – using social media to compile dictionary entries – and we would be keen to work with a range of social media channels in the future.”

Writer Lucy Mangan said using Tiwtter meant Collins was able: "to close the gap between the recording of a living language and its movements in the real world more than ever before – the goal of every compiler since Dr Johnson first scrawled ‘aardvark – giant, armoured woodlouse’ on his big papery thing tied up with string and kicked off the whole fascinating, frustrating, elusive, addictive process. At last the internet starts giving something back to word nerds.”

Adorkable will now be included in the next edition of the dictionary, published on 9th October 2014.