US, attested 1996, variant of earlier wh00t (1994), leetspeak form of whoot (1993), form standardized and popularized in dancehall anthem by rap song “Whoot, There It Is” (single released March 22, 1993) by group 95 South – compare often-confused “Whoomp! (There It Is)” (single released May 7, 1993) by group Tag Team – both in Miami bass genre (also less common “Whoops, there it is”), from earlier varied oral usage whoo, whoof, woo, woof (compare standard woohoo), notably by studio audience on The Arsenio Hall Show (1989–94) and in movie Pretty Woman (1990). The usage of The Arsenio Hall Show, specifically by the “dogpound” section of the audience, was in turn based on a dog’s bark woof (“(sound of dog barking)”), and derived from chants used at football games by the Cleveland Browns, from Hall’s home town, team nicknamed “The Dogs”.
Many folk etymologies exist, but written record is clear: the term appears widely in popular print use only from 1993, particularly used both in dancehalls and at sporting events, and is credited to the songs. The w00t form gained popularity on the internet from 1996, especially in massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs).
- (Internet slang, leetspeak) Used to express joy, particularly that felt during success or victory.
- w00t I've won this special item.
- 1994, John Paul Brzustowicz, rec.skiing.snowboard, Widowmaker CD ROM very soon, 11/10/1994
- I talked to some lady at Burton, and she was saying there's all kinds of neat stuff on the disk, like clicking in different places or such gets neat things not otherwise seen.....anyone find any of these?
- 1996, Matthew Cable, news:alt.test, Yeah!, Jan 8 1996, 1:00 am:
- This is a test
- “The Real History and Origin of Woot and w00t”, Grant Barrett, December 12, 2007
- ^ Barrett, quoting Jay-Ski, who produced “Whoot, There It Is,” in a 1997 interview:
“There were eight versions of that going around. The idea came from the streets, and even though the 95 South one might have been recorded first, it was Tag Team who released it earlier.”
- ^ G. Brown, Colorado Rocks (Pruett Publishing Co., 2004, p. 128), quoting members of Tag Team (Cecil “DC” Glenn and Steve “Roll’n” Gibson); quoted in Barrett:
“People had been saying ‘There it is’ forever. Everybody in Arsenio Hall’s television audience used to the ‘Wooof’ chant. We put that together with the ‘There it is’ dance-floor chant we were hearing at the club.
Gibson recalled that DC said, “Oh, man, we need to do a song called, ‘Whoom, there it is.”
“All I said was, ‘How do you spell it?”
- ^ “Fans & Fanatics > The Dogpound (The Arsenio Hall Show)”, in (Please provide the title of the work), TV Acres, accessed September 8, 2013
- Reuters: "w00t" crowned word of year by U.S. dictionary
- ABC News: Merriam-Webster's Word of '07: 'W00t'