Myspace is the thang, innit? Yes, if you want to win at Scrabble

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Myspace, on a triple word score would bag you 98 points, perhaps even enough to win a game in a single turn, and, as of now, it is also legal.

The first new edition of Collins Official Scrabble Words for four years is published today, and includes the name of the website among nearly 3,000 new additions.

Street vernacular including "innit", "thang" and "grrl" also make the list, dramatically increasing the game's already vast potential to ruin family holidays and Christmases with contentious words.

Wiki, once merely the Hawaiian for "fast" but now an internet buzzword, also counts. "Keema", "alu", "aloo" and "gobi" from the world of Indian cuisine are added to the mix, as well as "Tik", "gak" and "tina", street slang for recreational drugs.

The list for the latest edition of the book was created by staff at Collins Dictionaries, based in Glasgow, who say it is the "most comprehensive Scrabble word list ever produced".

Robert Groves, editor of Collins English Dictionaries and of the latest word list for Scrabble users, said: "These additions are an eclectic mix of new technological jargon, overseas English, recent colloquialisms, street slang, and a few fairly well-established phrases that had not made it on to the list until now."

Mark Nyman, 1993 world Scrabble champion and former Countdown producer said: "It's like the 'Bible' for Scrabble players. It's what we use to avoid any major arguments. It's fundamental, really.

"Basically, Collins is used as the Scrabble word reference apart from in the United States and Canada, where they use Webster's.

"I'm looking forward to using it. When words become commonly used it's representative and makes sense to include these in this reference book."

"While compiling this list we looked at dictionaries dating back to 2006. The word list was also compiled using the Collins Corpus – the world's largest language database of written and spoken English," Mr Groves said.

When the New York architect, Alfred Mosher Butts invented the game in 1938, he used a dictionary, as well as copies of The New York Times to tabulate the frequency of letters in words of various length. He used these frequencies to determine the value of the letter tiles, which are still used today.

The official list of words acceptable on a Scrabble board stretches to more than 260,000, and includes almost 6,000 words which are 15 letters in length.