2009 Word of the Year

Each year the New Oxford American Dictionary makes a big announcement as the year comes to close, the new WOTY (Word of the Year). So, our 2009 WOTY is


"unfriend – verb – To remove someone as a ‘friend’ on a social networking site such as Facebook."

I find it pretty amazing that social network is so ingrained as a part of our lives now that not only can a term created in Facebook be added to the dictionary, but it can be their word of the year. Here is a bit they had to say on why they made their choice:
“It has both currency and potential longevity,” notes Christine Lindberg, Senior Lexicographer for Oxford’s US dictionary program. “In the online social networking context, its meaning is understood, so its adoption as a modern verb form makes this an interesting choice for Word of the Year. Most “un-” prefixed words are adjectives (unacceptable, unpleasant), and there are certainly some familiar “un-” verbs (uncap, unpack), but “unfriend” is different from the norm. It assumes a verb sense of “friend” that is really not used (at least not since maybe the 17th century!). Unfriend has real lex-appeal.”
So here's to you 2009 WOTY, good job at making your way to the top. Hopefully now we don't do something to make you mad and you unfriend us.

[via OUP Blog]


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