Merriam-Webster Adds Crypto Words to the Dictionary

  • The Merriam-Webster dictionary is America’s oldest dictionary publisher.
  • The new words mirror the growing popularity of the crypto space.
  • According to the editors, crypto terminologies grew in popularity during the pandemic.

Merriam-Webster dictionary has added numerous financial terms, including crypto-related words, to its latest edition. This addition mirrors the popularity of digital assets. Some of the newly added terms are fast becoming a part of the financial market.

The online dictionary added 370 words, which it said grew in popularity since the pandemic. These new words describe different terms and logic during conversations on Crypto Twitter and other platforms.

Notably, these terms aim to create a sense of recognition for crypto users as the industry continues its widespread growth. Webster, which is said to be the longest-serving dictionary publishing company in the US, recognized words such as “‘Altcoins,” and “Metaverse.”

According to the dictionary company, altcoins are any of the over 20,000 coins “that are regarded as alternatives to established cryptocurrencies and especially to Bitcoin.” However Ethereans, who have maintained for years that Ethereum—along with Bitcoin—is no longer an altcoin, may be dissatisfied with this description. Ethereum has a leading presence in the crypto market, bettered only by Bitcoin in terms of market cap. But Ethereum boasts the highest fee volume, developer activity, and DeFi activities.

The Metaverse and Other Additions

According to the new additions, the “metaverse” is “a persistent virtual environment that allows access to and interoperability of multiple individual virtual realities.” This definition contrasts “meatspace,” which is described as “the physical world and environment, especially as contrasted with the virtual world of cyberspace.”

The metaverse has grown in popularity over the last few years. However, the definition by the Merriam-Webster dictionary puts a lot of perspective on the term, which to many remains ambiguous. Several key figures in the tech world have attempted to define the metaverse. According to Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the metaverse is “an embodied internet where you’re in the experience, not just looking at it.”

The Merriam-Webster dictionary regularly updates its words as it believes that the dictionary never stops expanding, just as language never stops evolving. According to the editors,

New terms and new uses for existing terms are constant in a living language, and our latest list brings together both new and likely familiar words that have shown extensive and established use.

Merriam-Webster gets approximately 40 million unique visitors and 100 million page views monthly. The publisher last released a batch of new words in October 2021, stating that the pandemic enhanced the practice of online interaction. The editors added,

The quick and informal nature of messaging, texting, and tweeting has contributed to a vocabulary newly rich in efficient and abbreviated expressions.

The dictionary also included financial terms that appear to have specific meanings in the crypto community. For example, “Use Cases” describe the functions or what an asset can perform. Other newly-added terminologies include “unbanked” and “underbanked,” which refer to people unable to access financial services. These individuals are said to lack proper access to the banking systems in their countries.

“Shrinkflation,” another new word in the online dictionary, refers to a reduction in a product at a fixed price. It can otherwise be called inflation.

Lawrence Woriji Verified

Lawrence has covered some exciting stories in his career as a journalist, he finds blockchain-related stories very intriguing. He believes Web3 will change the world and wants everyone to be a part of it.

Latest News