November 15th, 2006 ago I posted about Tynonym:

Tynonym: Definition. So what is a tynonym? It’s a word that you get as a suggestion on your mobile phone when you spell a word with T9 on.

January 10th, 2007 “Ksimsarian” made a new entry in Wikipedia, about T9onym:

A T9onym is a word that shows up on mobile phones that have T9 text entry that is equivalent through T9 to other words. T9onyms appear by pressing number keys while in T9 mode. For example, Bus and Cup are T9onyms. Other examples are If and He, Book and Cook, Sophie and Roshi. T9onyms can usually be reviewed and selected by placing the cursor at the end of the word and pressing the * (star) key to select an alternate T9onym. T9onyms are slang for those words generated through T9, in general these are referred to as textonyms.

(History for the Wikipedia page here.)


The T9onym page on Wikipedia has been deleted by The_Epopt. Oh, well. I don’t bother to ask why. Some Wikipedia people are really stubborn, and I really don’t care. If you have the time, ask him why. And feel free to comment her if you figure out why… Now back to the original article…

I’m just curious: Did anyone hear about T9onyms before it showed up on Wikipedia?

Jason Kottke writes about it today:

As books are decidedly uncool, you might wonder how this usage came about. Book is a T9onym of cool…both words require pressing 2665 on the keypad of a mobile phone but book comes up before cool in the T9 dictionary, leading to inadvertent uses of the former for the latter.

Hey, Jason. Didn’t you get my tip in November? đŸ˜‰

Update 1: Google research

Found a couple of links in Google when searching for T9onym, and yes, in in this messy post, quite a bit down, there’s this:

Hi Guys,
I wanted to know if there is word for ‘like-typed’ words on a mobile phone using T9.

For example, to type Cool you need to press 2665. This combination also gives you Book and Cook.

Also, certain combinations give you antonyms. For example, to type Reject, you need to press 735328. This also results in Select. Is there a word for this?

Can we call these words T9onyms?


Great word: T9onym. It’s easier to say Tynonym, but I guess T9onym makes it easier for (at the least for the more nerdy) people to understand what it is. So I credit Mayur for the word.

Update 2: Coudal

On Coudal today:

Lovely coinage. T9onyms. Pronounced “tynonyms,” two words made by texting the same numbers on a cell phone pad. jc-today

(link to archived post and screenshot on Flickr)

Great idea: Write it T9onyms, pronounce it “tynonym”. Although English teachers will go bananas…