Due to my association with the fraternity, I have a lot of connections with guys who are a few years younger than I am. One of these guys is a smart kid who was playing around online as the whole online communication thing became popular. So one day I asked him what the word “pwned” means and where it came from. Sure, I understand that it’s a variant of the word “owned,” but why the use of a “p” instead of an “o” when spelling the word? Here is his response:
The phrase “pwned” originated because of a typo, and it stuck as a phrase among the elite, or “l33t” h4ackers of the AOL Chat Room era, circa 1999-2002. A “newb,” or newbie, was a new face in these chat rooms where the “l33t” hung out. One was said to be “l33t” if they had a 3-character screen name and/or their screen name was in lowercase, as there was a 4-character minimum upon signing up and all first-letters of the screen name were always capitalized.
Just thought I’d share that with everyone so you understood what the hell this ridiculous term means, too! Thanks, GGL!