11 new English words – and how to use them

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Every year, about 1,000 new English words come into use. The English language is fast at adapting to the changing world and, as it evolves, these new words appear from many different walks of life.

Here, we take a look at some new English words and explain how to use them in your conversations…

1. Photobomb

Everyone loves to take a selfie – but who is that random person pulling a funny face in the background? They just photobombed you!

Example: “That would have been a nice photo if that guy hadn’t photobombed us.”

2. Vape

A recent trend is to give up smoking cigarettes in favour of electronic ones. If you like “vaping”, then you’re a “vaper”.

Example: “For the sake of my health I decided to give up smoking and try vaping.”

3. Glamping

If you like camping but are looking for something less muddy and more comfortable, you could try glamping – or glamorous camping. You still stay in a tent or tepee in the great outdoors, but usually you’ll be sleeping on a bed with pillows and duvets and there may even be a kitchenette and Wi-Fi.

Example: “We wanted to try something a bit more luxurious than camping, so we booked to go glamping.”

4. Binge-watch

The huge take-up of on-demand TV and box sets have brought about this new word. It means to watch a large number of television shows, usually from the same series, in succession.

Example: “I was ill last week, so I downloaded and binge-watched the whole of series one of Game of Thrones in one day!”

5. Meh

Originating from TV’s The Simpsons, this word has become a popular way to express the fact that you’re not bothered or impressed about something.

Example: “I ordered a new dress online, but when I tried it on – meh.”

6. Freegan

In opposition to consumerism and capitalism, there is a group of people that tries to recycle everything, including eating food that has been thrown away. These folk are known as freegans.

Example: “Steve hates waste, so he decided to become a freegan to reduce food waste.”

7. Voluntourism

This term describes people who volunteer overseas for a charity, maybe to work on a project for elephants’ welfare or to help build a community school, but their actual motivation is to visit foreign places. The word is also used to mean tagging on a holiday at the end of a volunteer period abroad.

Example: “I really want to explore South America, so I thought I’d try voluntourism.”

8. Webisode

Popular streaming websites, such as Netflix and Amazon Video, show TV programmes that are only available online and these are known as webisodes. You’ll only be able to find these TV shows using the internet.

Example: “I’m going to watch the new webisode of Orange is the New Black on Netflix.”

9. Crowdfund

To fund a project from lots of people who usually donate a small amount.

Example: “Agatha wanted to start a new charity project, so she tried crowdfunding to raise some money.”

10. Skort

A new fashion item that looks great but is practical, too – a pair of shorts with a flap of material over the top that makes it look like a skirt.

Example: “Jonathan wants to go roller-skating so I bought a skort – just in case I fall over!”

11. Buko

A new slang term to mean “much” or “many”.

Example: “I’ve worked extra hours this week and earned buko cash.”


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