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Why we say “OK”

118493 ratings | 3612216 views
How a cheesy joke from the 1830s became the most widely spoken word in the world. Subscribe to our channel! http://goo.gl/0bsAjO OK is thought to be the most widely recognized word on the planet. We use it to communicate with each other, as well as our technology. But it actually started out as a language fad in the 1830’s of abbreviating words incorrectly. Young intellectuals in Boston came up with several of these abbreviations, including “KC” for “knuff ced,” “OW” for “oll wright,” and KY for “know yuse.” But thanks to its appearance in Martin Van Buren’s 1840 presidential re-election campaign as the incumbents new nickname, Old Kinderhook, OK outlived its abbreviated comrades. Later, widespread use by early telegraph operators caused OK to go mainstream, and its original purpose as a neutral affirmative is still how we use it today. Vox.com is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out http://www.vox.com. Watch our full video catalog: http://goo.gl/IZONyE Follow Vox on Facebook: http://goo.gl/U2g06o Or Twitter: http://goo.gl/XFrZ5H
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Text Comments (10126)
Vox (4 months ago)
Another popular false origin of OK comes from the American Civil War (1861-1865) which says that soldiers returning from battle would report "0K" (zero killed). And there's a few from around the world, too. Like the Greek "όλα καλά (óla kalá) which means "all good," the Scottish "och aye," which means "oh yes," and even a French-named seaport in Haiti, Aux Cayes. While these are all pretty interesting and might indicate why "OK" was so easily adapted into language worldwide, none of them can actually be traced in their influence the way "oll korrect" can. Neat. - Coleman
sir monsieur (6 minutes ago)
+Mikrofonlar Kralarına Cevaplar cheeel 😂
saif haider (6 days ago)
Yay :D (17 days ago)
the chad (1 month ago)
Eamonn Scully (1 month ago)
I thought for years it came from the Lakota Sioux tribe Hokay Hey meaning "a good day to die Now it appears I was badly mistaken
sir monsieur (8 minutes ago)
the letter C mad asl right now
Seraaron (33 minutes ago)
Ok but why do some people spell it 'okay'?
808JOKER (5 hours ago)
Zah Raz (11 hours ago)
I live in Iraq and people use it here as a part of slang. And I didn't expect it to be used so often.
fiscaljoy (16 hours ago)
alexander5 (17 hours ago)
knock out
alexander5 (17 hours ago)
Char10tti3 (21 hours ago)
Shiny Paint (1 day ago)
Ponemah Elementary (1 day ago)
Okie Diddly Okie
Leo g (1 day ago)
Always thought it meant oll klear - All clear.
James Patton (2 days ago)
Is it Okay? Or OK?
vxCece15xv (2 days ago)
When correct was spelled with a K... why did we change it though?
Lil'Monki (2 days ago)
Ola kala (greek) = all good :)
Unknown Music (2 days ago)
Trung Nguyen (2 days ago)
I feel attacked
1830s hipsters started it. OK. 😂 👌🏻
Nethu (3 days ago)
I can't swim I can't dance and i don't know karate Face it we got *that feeling* suddenly after seeing them...
Nethu (3 days ago)
Oh god Did i just see mcr After all this time...
robby (3 days ago)
but where did the ok hand sing come from
Baek's smile, My life (3 days ago)
Ok 👍
Diego Huijbregts (3 days ago)
My guess was "Oll Klear"
Yuuki Kuroutarou (3 days ago)
If you think about it, the word OK can trace itself to the Scandinavian languages, in the word ok (pronounced oo-kuh) which means the same thing.
Nice clip of the Stella shorts. Pretty obscure stuff. Awesome!
DeadBait (3 days ago)
Is the k in ok suppose to be capital or lowercase, I use a certain keyboard with a font I like but it always capitalizes the k in ok and its a bother to fix it 😕
Sbeth85 (3 days ago)
You didn't address why it started off as "oll korrect" instead of "all correct." Why isn't OK actually AC?
Greg Dundee (3 days ago)
Moby Dick (3 days ago)
memes in the 1800s lasted long wow
I have not nor will I ever spell business names with a K. It is wrong. Spelling it as such violates the social contract and steals my fizzy lifting drinks. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hx8o7vpB9ho
rbk (4 days ago)
Cyn Ica L (4 days ago)
Do y’all think big Chungus will survive 150 years?
VosGamerNL (4 days ago)
Maarten van Buren 🇳🇱🇳🇱🇳🇱
every time you hear 'ok' take a shot
But low resolution holds/captures and shows 'hokus pokus' as "OK'us LOTus"! If you just use then a text to speech app you're forever done by your very MOBile! .. ;-)..
Pls WaLuigi Dom Me (4 days ago)
I find it funny how pompous people are towards new slang meanwhile not realizing most of the words we use today come from slang words
okay (4 days ago)
I feel personally attacked by that inclusion of MCR’s I’m Not Okay why would you play with my heart like that?
ok (4 days ago)
weird flex but •• —•—
FBI Undercover Loli (4 days ago)
Ahem its “K”
Zzz zzzZ (5 days ago)
They had memes back in the 1800’s lmao
Forklift Master (5 days ago)
Hey you wanna piss someone off? Just reply K whenever someone sents you a long message to u .
What's Kraken? (5 days ago)
ahhh... yes. My Chemical Romance.
Nataly A (6 days ago)
Okay? Okay?
But that explanation will give us KY
O.K should be called A.C so now it’s correct
Hartl Tuerkmayr (8 days ago)
Hari Ng Norte (8 days ago)
I was waiting for the african dude "'ho-ke"'
Tranquilo Men (9 days ago)
Tranquilo Men (9 days ago)
Ok 👍🏻
TomTubesYou (11 days ago)
Juan Martín (11 days ago)
(.. _._) = IK 😧 (___ _._) = OK
Jared Wells (11 days ago)
Strong Bad!
Red (11 days ago)
Drunken Deity (11 days ago)
Oll Ryte
Firman N (11 days ago)
Mitchell Brooks (12 days ago)
Just watched Silver Linings Playbook and I don't know how to feel about this
Sevsnk (12 days ago)
Okokokoko o-k ook
jay g. (13 days ago)
I think what's really cool about the word "OK" is that it's not just used in English–the word exists in other languages too, including German, Japanese, Korean, and more. Of course, it's probably considered a borrowed word from English but it's still common, and I personally think that's really interesting to think about.
Daily Memes (13 days ago)
-ok- *Okay*
Anas Mutlaq (13 days ago)
Rafa Rodhes (14 days ago)
Lmao the original meme 😂😂😂😂
Chief (15 days ago)
So did “O.K.” come before “okay”?
Andy Sammy (15 days ago)
I hate it when people doing things today are put down but if people did the same thing hundreds of years ago then all of a sudden it becomes oolala fancy
Andelu (15 days ago)
I thought this video was gonna be OW, but turned out it was cool. KC go watch it yourself.
John Wilbers (16 days ago)
Anyone else notice the error @2:53? The Morris Code for "OK" should be " - - - - * - " not " ** - * - "
NadEr (16 days ago)
holy cow next 😬
*Blueberry Cream* (17 days ago)
Ok was from 10M YEARS AGO :
Garima Singh (17 days ago)
Ok jaanu !☺
thatspoopychild (17 days ago)
4:28 look at gorgeous Joe
Will Davis (17 days ago)
I’m surprised the fault in our stars wasn’t mentioned...
Jon F (17 days ago)
what is not mentioned in this video, is the number of other languages that OK is used ubiquitously. Italian and Spanish, for starters, but I'm sure there are many others
Non Existent (17 days ago)
Wait.... so is OK the oldest and the most relevant meme?
I thought C was .-.- in morse code. Huh.
R E (18 days ago)
O qué
Maxine Harper (18 days ago)
What about that scene from Silver Linings Playbook, when Bradley Cooper said OK comes from the old club Old Kinderhooks?
Dalton Elswick (18 days ago)
I said ok at the end
waleed nasseri (19 days ago)
The black guy that said ok gettving triggered by this video but says okay
the dark one (19 days ago)
Hmmm how do I know that this is true or how do they know?
trinity. (22 days ago)
maybe the reason why we say “Oh” is similar
NyuPenyu (22 days ago)
ladies and gentlemen, we gotem
İrem (22 days ago)
gender communist (23 days ago)
4:52 Why did you ignore Gerald's message about the chicken?
Kick Saunders (23 days ago)
I feel so un-cool now. If my 1030 friends started saying "KC" I'd have to look it up... X(
Clark Dawine (24 days ago)
qwerty (24 days ago)
Jodie Kingsbury (25 days ago)
Novák Csilla (26 days ago)
But O is ––– !! •• is I So OK is ––– –•–
Snoopy (26 days ago)
Reminds me of omg, lol, and all the new abbreviations we use in text
Eren Jäger (27 days ago)
the fact the it's supposed to be AC
killernat1234 (27 days ago)
You spelt it wrong
Comment Dweller (28 days ago)
Vincenzo (28 days ago)
Jay Miles (28 days ago)
4:49 look at the bottom review
Danial W. (28 days ago)
2018: Why we say "OK" 2050: Why we say "Oof" 2100: Why we say "E"
Zero Kills = 0 Kills= Ok
Bader Lajnef (29 days ago)
Holy Crusader (29 days ago)
Swagger wasn’t lying
TopThat (29 days ago)
Weird flex but oll korrect
Yogesh (29 days ago)
its "Okay" ok
Elsa Frost (29 days ago)
So.. was starting words with "k" was like replacing "s" with "z" or ending names with "i"?

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