Twitterverse: The birth of new words

Olga Klymenko


New words are continuously being coined on Twitter, which is regarded as a means of creating and distributing new words, concepts and ideas. Our research focuses on the way Twitter’s apt naming has become one of the richest sources of brand-related word-formation. The current study has identified various productive patterns of new Twitter word-formation, such as affixation, compounding, blending, abbreviation and the powerful mechanism of lexical analogy. We have also identified the most common models used in coining new units of each type. The creation of new Twitter words has various functions and effects: establishing a closer social connection; jocular/mocking function; novelty and originality; desire to follow fashion; and denominative/labelling function. We conclude that in the era of an ever-growing amount of data, the popularity of Twitter has become a breeding ground for new brand-related words that have enriched the modern English vocabulary.


word formation; pattern; model; affixation; compounding; blending; abbreviation; lexical analogy; twitter

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Copyright (c) 2019 Olga Klymenko

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