Richard G. Jones, Jr.
Scholar, Educator, Author


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"Hashtag" is American Dialect Society's 2012 Word of the Year

Jan 18, 2013

And "Mansplaining" is the Most Creative

You're all familiar with the power of the hashtag at this point. The word is so powerful, in fact, that the American Dialect Society recently named that the "2012 Word of the Year." #CongratulationsHashtag

In the announcement, they quote Ben Zimmer, who chaired the new words committee, as saying:

"This was the year when the hashtag became a ubiquitous phenomenon in online talk. In the Twittersphere and elsewhere, hashtags have created instant social trends, spreading bite-sized viral messages on topics ranging from politics to pop culture."

The announcement also features other word categories you may want to check out. For example, the word voted "most creative" was: mansplaining: a man’s condescending explanation to a female audience.

Fiscal cliff won "most likely to succeed" and "legitimate rape" got the much deserved distinctions of being the "most unnecessary" and the "most outrageous."

As we move into a new year, take note of new words and phrases that enter frequent usage. Also note old words that make a comeback.