20 September, 2017
About six years ago, actor Alec Baldwin made some news, but not for a role in a new movie or a television appearance.
He was removed from an American Airlines flight for playing ‘Words with Friends' on his mobile phone.
Stories from 2011 say Baldwin may have continued playing the game even though he was told to put his phone away.
But now, if Baldwin is still a fan of the game, he has a lot more words to choose from.
The game developer recently announced it is adding 50,000 words from popular culture.
Some of the words include BFF, delish, hangry, bae and bestie.
BFF stands for "best friends forever." Something that is "delish" tastes very good. Someone who is hungry and angry is "hangry."
A man might call his girlfriend his "bae" and a person's BFF might also be her "bestie."
Gurpreet Singh supervises the game for Zynga, the company that created the game.
He said Zynga gets 5,000 suggestions per day for new words.
The words may not be familiar to English learners, but they are "slang," or non-traditional words that are not found in dictionaries.
Zynga says the game has been installed on 200 million phones since 2009. According to the company, at any given time, about 57 million Words with Friends games are going on.
The new words will give players over 200,000 words to choose from.
"Twerk" and "selfie" were added to the game in 2014. Earlier this year, "covfefe" was added. If you recall, that was a strange word that appeared in one of President Donald Trump's tweets in late May.
A selfie is a photo someone takes of oneself using the camera built into a mobile phone. A twerk is a kind of dance move.
Singh says he knows a lot of these words are not correct English words. But he and his team pay attention to popular terms that might help people have more fun when they are playing.
Right now, one of his favorite words is "queso." It is worth a lot of points when he is playing Words with Friends. Queso is the Spanish word for cheese. But in the United States, people understand this as melted cheese one might order at a Mexican restaurant or pour on top of tortilla chips.
I'm Dan Friedell.
Dan Friedell adapted this story for Learning English based on reporting by the Associated Press. Hai Do was the editor.
Will you enjoy playing Words with Friends now that there are more words to choose from? We want to know. Write to us in the Comments Section or on 51VOA.COM.
Words in This Story
twerk – n. a dance move that requires shaking the part of the body that you sit on
tortilla chip – n. a thin, hard piece of food (called a chip) that is made from corn and usually salted