Like e-mail chain letters, Ookie Cookie and the career of Paul Reiser, nobody is really sure how particular bits of cultural apocrypha came to be. After our post on smacktalking for multiplayer newcomers (or "n00bs" -- thanks, Wikipedia!), we were SEVERELY GRIEFED in the comments, particularly about the origin of PWN. So, for your viewing pleasure, we present the theories of several readers who, true to the gentlemanly rules of the Internet, politely beg to differ.

um: "Pwn is spelled this way because 'p' is next to 'o' on the keyboard and it's a common typo for people rushing to type in multiplayer computer games."

unlazyfree: "'pwn' actually came from an old school computer game (i forget what it's called) but it was a simple misspelling 'you got pwned' but the voice said 'owned.' it didn't come from trying to get around word filters, it was just a typo in a game and it stuck ever since."

WRONG: "PWN has been around since at least 1996 with Quake Team Fortress. The first time it showed up I'm pretty sure it was people misstyping 'owned.'"

Subhazard: "This article is retarted, and obviously written by a layman. ... 'Pwn' came from Counter-Strike (Not South Park, what the f---?) which is just another spelling of 'own'. To 'Own' someone, is to f--- them over royally, like melee'ing someone when -they- have a shotgun, or beating someone down with their own team's flag. There's a gradient here as well."

Thanks. Like on the meaning of "San Diego," agree to disagree, guys? No? We didn't think so.

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