Oxford will let people decide the “Word of the Year 2022.” The final three contenders are “metaverse,” “#IstandWith,” and “goblin mode.”
Perhaps you’ve been using the hashtag #IStandWith to publicly declare your support for issues or certain people on social media this year or you were a tech enthusiast talking a lot about the metaverse.
Word of the Year 2022: Oxford to let people
The Oxford English Dictionary’s parent company, Oxford Languages, has selected these three “words” as its top contenders for word of the year 2022. Expert lexicographers have chosen just three terms from a vast list of competitors, but for the first time ever, the public will have the final say.
Dictionary rival Collins has already revealed its term for this year, “permacrisis,” which means “an extended period of instability and insecurity.”
“Homer” was chosen by the Cambridge Dictionary as the word of the year for 2022, citing Wordle as its source of inspiration. When the word “homer” was a response in the word game Wordle, it was searched for almost 75,000 times during the first week of May 2022. The term “homer” in the context of the game does not allude to the Greek poet and author or a Simpsons character, but rather to an informal American English term for a baseball “home run.”
Homer is a termn only known to Americans. On social media, non-Americans complained about their inability to guess the unusual English term and went to the dictionary to look up its definition. The term had a surge in searches, making it the word with the biggest increase in the Cambridge dictionary.
Which word would you choose from Oxford’s top three?
The meaning of metaverse
“In ‘metaverse‘, we see the conceptual future brought into the vernacular in 2022. From hybrid working in VR, to debates over the ethics and feasibility of an entirely online future, usage of this word has quadrupled in October 2022 compared to the same period last year,” Oxford states.
The meaning of #IStandWith
“From war in Ukraine, to the Depp v Heard lawsuit, this ‘word’ coined on social media to align your views to a cause or person can often further foster dispute (and sometimes even hate speech) in its polarising nature,” Oxford states.
The meaning of goblin mode
Goblin mode refers to the concept of defying social expectations in favor of following your own desires.
“Early usage dates back to 2009-10, but as we emerged from lockdowns all over the world, the phrase has been coined in rejection of returning ‘back to normal’ after a fake ‘quote’ from [Kanye West’s ex] Julia Fox brought the term back into the mainstream,” Oxford states.
For those who are unfamiliar with the Fox “goblin mode” story, a fabricated statement made on Twitter about Fox and West’s breakup was picked up by some news and media outlets after going viral; this is an excellent example of fake news, which was 2017’s Word of the Year according to Collins Dictionary.
Where to vote for Oxford’s Word of the Year 2022?
Voting for Oxford’s Word of the Year for 2022 is currently underway and ends on December 2.
Following the pandemic, this year was defined by “opening back up,” according to a statement from Oxford Languages, but despite being able to physically rejoin, “our world somehow feels more divided” than ever.
- Visit this link to vote for Oxford’s Word of the Year 2022.
“In recognition of this shift, we wanted to open up the final step of our word of the year selection process to the true arbiters of language: people around the world.”