(n.) a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website.

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If you’re wondering why there was a definition at the beginning of the post, it’s because “selfie” is Oxford Dictionary’s 2013 word of the year.

Made famous by celebrities, friends, family, and annoying coworkers, the digital self-portrait has boomed in recent years. The dictionary says usage of the word has risen by 17,000 percent in the past 12 months.

Origins of the word date back to 2002 when it was first appeared in an Australian online forum.

“The Word of the Year need not have been coined within the past 12 months and it does not have to be a word that will stick around for a good length of time,” Judy Pearsall, editorial director for Oxford Dictionaries, tells Reuters. “It is very difficult to predict accurately which new words will have staying power, and only time will tell if these words have lasting significance.”

We encourage you to tweet your selfies to @WNEW.


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