This list of every 'Word of the Year' is like taking a trip through time
Samantha Lee/Business Insider
Hashtag. Metrosexual. Occupy.
Those three words have one thing in common - they've all been named "Word of the Year."
Every year since 1990, members of the American Dialect Society have gathered at their annual convention - once called "the Super Bowl of linguistics" - to crown the word that defined the year. The linguists and lexicographers vote on words based on their predominance in headlines and widespread use throughout the country.
Anything considered a "lexical item" can be nominated, meaning multi-word phrases like "dumpster fire" - named 2016's Word of the Year earlier this month - are fair game. The same goes for hashtags, prefixes, and even emoji.
Because each Word of the Year is closely tied with the era that spawned it, looking back at the list of every winner is like flipping through a yearbook of the past quarter-century. There's the surge of Internet-related words like "cyber" and "information superhighway" in the early 1990s and a string of political words like "chad" and "weapons of mass destruction" that reflected the climate of the early 2000s.
More recently, tech words like "tweet" and "app" have dominated the vote, demonstrating how much the internet has influenced our language.
Take a look at every Word of the Year, and take a trip through time.
- I'm a 56-year-old IT worker who got laid off last year and have been unemployed ever since. I have a hunch I'm not finding work due to ageism. How do I prove it?
- WhatsApp introduces the “Message Yourself” feature, working on voice status updates and more
- DeSantis says Congress should act if Apple follows through on Elon Musk claims and bans Twitter from App Store
- India Inc.’s rockstars of Q2 and things that investors should look out for, according to analysts
- Best refrigerator under ₹15000
- Asus ROG Phone 6 review: A bit more than just gaming
- Fintech unicorn CRED to acquire SaaS startup CreditVidya
- Jio Haptik and CASHe partner to deliver instant credit lines on Whatsapp