A DICTIONARY publisher has named “Gangnam Style” and “fiscal cliff” among its words of the year for 2012.
CollinsDictionary.com selected 12 words, one for each month, which played their part in defining the past year. The final list - made after members of the public submitted their own suggestions - reflect the top news stories and trends of the year, with events such as the Olympics, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the US election all represented.
South Korean musician Psy’s catchy song Gangnam Style was chosen as the word for November, the month in which it became the most-viewed video on YouTube with close to a billion views. “Fiscal cliff” made it into the list for this month amid talk of the US government facing a sharp decrease in government spending and an increase in taxes that could throw the economy back into recession.
On a similar theme, earlier this year Europe was abuzz with the threat of “Eurogeddon” as the economic situation in the Eurozone worsened. The word made it on to the list for March.
The UK’s extraordinary summer of events is celebrated with two words on the 2012 list. “Jubilympics” recalls the month of June, in which Britain was preparing to host the London Olympics and celebrate the Diamond Jubilee while “Games makers”, London’s vast team of Olympics volunteers, make it on to the list for August.
In May, Facebook launched its initial public offering and its share price plummeted almost immediately after hitting the public market. The event led to the word “zuckered”, named after the social networking site’s founder Mark Zuckerberg.
When US presidential candidate Mitt Romney travelled to London in July, his critics branded the visit a “Romneyshambles”, a word which also makes it on to the list. Romney’s secretly-taped comment that 47% of Americans would vote for Obama no matter what because they are dependent on the government meant that “47 per cent” became a key phrase of the election and enters the dictionary list for September.
October’s word is “superstorm” after Superstorm Sandy, which wreaked havoc in portions of the Caribbean, the mid-Atlantic and the northeastern United States. The list is completed with January’s nominated word, “Broga”. The word, formed from the combination of “bro” and yoga, accompanied the launch of a new form of yoga tailored to men. –SN