Words of the Year Around the World

Nov 17, 2010

Macquarie Word of the Year Coming Soon!

As the year draws to a close wordsmiths around the world are considering their options for Word of the Year, although the rules for selection vary.

The American approach is to ask which word has the highest media profile. It was decided that Sarah Palin's tweet blooper refudiate had to be the winner. We think that Palin probably meant 'repudiate' but somehow 'refute' got in the way.Other candidates were bankster (a blend of banker and gangster), retweetdouble-dip as in double-dip recession, gleek (a fan of the television series Glee) and nom nom, a noise you make to express appreciation of what you are eating (from the Cookie Monster's noises made when eating cookies which is something like Om nom nom nom nom). 

But, if you read the fine print you see that these words are not necessarily going to be included in an American dictionary. It is just that they have been the biggest buzz words for the year or gained the most media attention. This makes them rather different from the Macquarie words that will be posted in January, which all have to earn their place in the dictionary and will be part of the annual online update at the end of the year, before they can be considered as candidates for Word of the Year. 

Just to whet your appetite, here are some of the possibilities for Macquarie Word of the Year from 2010 so far:

angel peach

binge listening

bum boarding



fire sculpture


meow meow

mosaic irrigation


terrorist chic


Now is your last chance to suggest the word which you think has been the most significant in 2010 to make sure we include it in the dictionary! Post them here or submit them via the Add-a-word page on our website.

This article was originally posted on our Facebook page.

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