Monday, April 27, 2009

Twitter Lexicon: A Proposal


As I use Twitter more, I find myself trying to referencing it in new ways. Most of them are simple, and many other people have already started using—but some things just don’t come up often.


Twitter [twi-ter] (n): A microblogging service. “I use Twitter.”

twitter[twi-ter] (v): To use Twitter. “I’m going to twitter that.”

twittering[twi-ter-ing] (v, present): Using Twitter. “There are a lot of people twittering this.”

twittered[twi-turd] (v, past): Previously used Twitter. “I twittered about that.”

twit [t-wit] (n): A person who uses Twitter. “I am a twit.”

tweep [t-weap] (n): A person you know on Twitter. “My tweep @LtWorf and I are going to the store.”

tweeple [t-we-ple] (n, plural): A group of people on Twitter. “Some tweeple just don’t get it.”

tweet [t-weat] (n): A post on Twitter. “Did you read that tweet?”

tweet [tw-‘et] (v): To post on Twitter. “I’m so going to tweet this.”

tweeting [tw-‘et-ing] (v, present): Currently posting on Twitter. “Hold on, I’m tweeting what you just said.”

twate [tw-‘at] (v, past): Having posted on Twitter in the past. “I twate about that an hour ago.”

twaten [tw-‘at-n] (adj): Has been twate. “That has been twaten to death.”

twote [t-w’ot] (v): To quote something from Twitter. “@StephenColbert just twote @biz on-air”

twoted [t-w’ot] (v, past): Quoted something from Twitter. “Earlier, @StephenColbert twoted @biz on-air”

Regarding “Twate”

I spent many hours thinking about what form the past simple and past participle forms of “tweet” should take, and I had a couple other candidates:

“twote”/”twitten,” from “wrote”/”written;” but it sounds like a portmanteau of “twitter” and “quote,” which made it into the lexicon on its own.

“twang”/”twung,” from “sang”/”sung” — Just doesn’t sound right at all.

“twaid” from “said;” but could be mistaken for a portmanteau of “twitter” and “paid.”

Eventually, I settled on “twate,” using “eat” as a conjugation template, and arrived at the tweet/twate/tweeten.