Should “Tweeps” Be in the Dictionary?

“NO” and even, “NOOOOOO!” were some of the more emphatic reactions of many of Library Journal’s and Oxford University Press’s (OUP) Twitter followers who were recently posed with the question, “Should ‘tweeps’ be in the dictionary?” OUP asked the question ahead of the publisher’s June 18 webcast, hosted by Library Journal, which explored how social media affects “our view of dictionaries and the development of the English language.”

As reference editor for Library Journal, I already knew that librarians felt strongly about maintaining the quality of print dictionaries, but I didn’t quite understand that many users felt that the dictionary should catalog a kind of “ideal” English, instead of representing all the language that is in use. Many other thought-provoking ideas emerged from the approximately one-hour discussion that was moderated by Library Journal’s Josh Hadro.

Read my summary of the webcast on Oxford’s website.

Henrietta Verma About Henrietta Verma

Henrietta Verma (, @ettaverma) is reviews editor at Library Journal, edits LJ's reference review column, and covers ereference and digital databases for the magazine. Before joining LJ's staff, Etta was reference editor at SLJ for five years and edited that magazine's Series Made Simple supplement. Etta, who is from Ireland, has also been a reference librarian and a library director and is the mom of two avid readers.