Another New Media Company that Passes into the Language
AUSTIN, Texas December 21, 2010 – WikiLeaks.ch, which that has increasingly upped the ante of the kind of information that it leaks into the public sphere from anonymous sources, has been deemed an English language word by the Global language Monitor. GLM recognizes a word as being part of the English language once it meets the requisite criteria of geographic reach as well as ‘depth and breadth’ of recorded usage.
In the case of wikileaks, the word appeared sporadically in the global media in 2006 until it has now been cited more than 300 million times, even with a quick Google search. This, of course, correlates with WikiLeaks’ most recent release of diplomatic correspondence and other classified government information. GLM standards include a minimum of 25,000 citations of a new term in the global media that encompass the English-speaking world, which now encompasses some 1.58 billion people. (In 1960, there were about 250 million English speakers, mostly in former British colonies.)
“Wikileaks joins a number of new media and high technology companies whose names and functions are being incorporated into the language,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of Austin-based Global Language Monitor. “These include Google, Twitter and the ‘friending’ function of Facebook. The most recent language spin-off from Google appears to be Xoogler, referring to ex-Google employees who bring their talents to other start-ups.”
The word ‘wiki’ is Hawaiian in origin and is usually defined as ‘quick’ or ‘fast’ especially when used in rapid succession: ”wiki, wiki, wiki!”. In computing, a wiki describes software that lets any user create or edit Web-server content. The WikiLeaks organization was originally set-up as a ‘wiki’.
There is no official English language institution charged with maintaining the ‘purity’ of the English language and to maintain vigilance of the ‘corrupting influence’ of other languages. English accepts any and all contenders as long as they meet the requisite criteria of geographic reach as well as depth and breadth of usage. The L’Académie française is the official arbiter of the French language; it has famously declared the word ‘email’ (as well as ‘hamburger’) verboten from official French correspondence. The Royal Spanish Academy serves the same function for the Spanish language; it has recently eliminated two letters from the Spanish alphabet to the howl of Spanish speakers outside Spain.
The most recent words acknowledged by the Global Language Monitor include ‘refudiate’ a malapropism coined by Sarah Palin, ‘vuvuzela’ the brightly colored plastic horns made (in)famous at the South African World Cup, and ‘snowmageddon’ that President Obama used to described the winter storms that nearly shut down Washington, DC during the recent winter.
South African World Cup tops iPad Launch and Rise of China;
US Healthcare Reform & Wikileaks follow
First time a product launch contends for the top spot; First time a sporting event reaches the top spot
Austin, TX December 19, 2009 – In an exclusive global analysis performed by the Global Language Monitor, the Top News Stories of 2010 are South African World Cup, the iPad Launch, the Rise of China, US Healthcare Reform, and Wikileaks. The Tea Party movement, the fall of Obama, the Gulf Oil Spill, Haitian Earthquake, and the Political Anger and Rage witnessed in the major western economies, followed. The list is notable for two firsts: the first time a sporting event tops the list and the first time a product launch contends for the top spot.
“The globe has witnessed the major news sources of the 20th century fragment into thousands of micro-focused outlets in the twenty-first. At the same time, the major global media are playing an ever-more important role when major events occur, as aggregate communities for shared experiences,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor, the media analytics and trend tracking company. “For these reasons we performed two independent analyses. The first focused on the number of citations found over the course of the year on the Internet, blogosphere, and social media sites. The second focused on the top 75,000 print and electronic media sites. Finally, the two analyses were normalized with the final results appearing here.”
The Top News Stories of 2010 follow.
1. South African World Cup – The South African World Cup towered over all other news stories.
2. iPad – A product launch is the No. 2 worldwide news story!?
3. Rise of China – Top Story of the First Decade of the 21st century, still very strong.
4. Health Care Reform – The debate over the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Ac t continues unabated.
5. Wikileaks – Not a wiki in the usual sense of ‘an open environment which anyone can edit,’ the story of revealed institutional secrets that will continue to resonate well into 2011.
6. Tea Party – The US political movement which emphasizes scaled back government intrusion, influence and spending.
7. Fall of Obama – His fall is relative to the great heights to which he ascended.
8. Gulf Oil Spill – An unprecedented environmental catastrophe broadcast live around the world via the BP Spillcam.
9. Haitian Earthquake – Hundreds of thousands killed, millions displaced and the agony continues.
10. Political Anger and Rage – Frustration in the US and much of the developed world about the financial and political situation.
11. EU Financial Crisis – The economies of Ireland, Portugal, Greece and Spain threaten to consume Billions of Euros in bailouts.
12. Shanghai Expo – The “Grand Gathering of the World Cultures” was visited by some 70 million in 2010.
13. Growth of Facebook – With 400 million members it now touts itself as the fourth largest nation on the planet. However, there is no word of UN membership or plans for a standing army.
14. Pakistan Floods – Garnered more attention worldwide than in the US.
15. Scott Brown Election – The turnover of the ‘Kennedy seat’ after half a century to this upstart, pickup-driving Republican caused quite a stir.
16. Tiger Woods – Previously notable for the first golfer to earn a billion dollars, the news of his serial infidelities continues to impact the golf world.
17. British coalition government — David Cameron and Nick Clegg lead a new coalition into power.
18. Chilean Miners – The dramatic saga and rescue of Los 33, provided riveting drama (and television) to a world weary of disheartening news.
19. Polish President Killed — Lech Kaczynski, his wife, and dozens of high government officials died en route to a memorial service honoring the 20,000 Poles who died in the Katyn forest.
20. Global economic restructuring – Also known as the Great Recession in the US, but felt worldwide especially among developed Western nations.
21. Vuvuzela – The brightly colored plastic horns that caused much consternation at the South African World Cup.
23. Ground Zero Mosque – Officially known as 45 Park Place, the controversial Islamic center planned a few blocks north of Ground Zero.
24. Icelandic Volcano – The unpronounceable Eyjafjallajökull volcano that disrupted air travel over much of Northern Europe.
25. Snowmageddon – The unusually heavy snowfalls that virtually shut down Washington, DC during an exceptionally snowy winter.
The TrendTopper MediaBuzz Rankings are a way of seeing the schools through the eyes of the world at large. It is a democratic, self-generating ratings system, since it captures the brand equity associated with each of these fine institutions. GLM’s TrendTopper MediaBuzz Rankings actually removes all bias inherent in each of the other published rankings, since they actually reflect what is being said and stated on the billions of web pages that we measure.
We are Up-to-date, as in, we are an on-going, longitudinal study. Our rankings are fresh, current and updated continually throughout the year. You will never need to wait until the first week in September to see how your schools are ranking.
We Provide Brand Analysis. Schools are either hot, or they’re not. We tell you how your schools rank, as brands. Every school on our list has made the cut! Every school is considered a good school, if not a great school.
We Measure Brand Equity; the perceived value of your school. Penn is a great (Ivy League) school, but Penn State (before the scandal) was nearly equivalent (No. 22 vs No. 24) in brand equity. After reading our report you can then ask yourself, is it worth the difference in price?
The World vs. The Deans. Other rankings are inherently biased. You need to stop and think – does my future employer really care about how other deans rank my school? Get real. The only question he or she actually cares about is can you do the work?
We continually update the Top 300 Colleges and Universities Guide throughout the year, so the information that you receive is always fresh and up-to-date.
We are Inclusive, listing Internet and Specialty Schools. It’s important to understand the rankings for Julliard and Cooper Union, as well as schools like the University of Phoenix, historical Black Colleges, and the notoriously underrepresented City University of New York. We even rank schools that opt-out of traditional rankings, such as Bard.
About The TrendTopper MediaBuzz Rankings
GLM created the TrendTopper MediaBuzz Rankings to remove all bias that we saw as inherent in each of the other published rankings, be they peer assessments, the opinion of high school guidance counselors, the ratio of endowment to number of students, number of left-leaning professors, and all the rest.
We found it highly interest that many institutions used our rankings as a validation of their recent reputation management decisions:
Harvard University: “Rankings highlight correlation between university prestige and media coverage … Indeed, the study seems to validate the Harvard Kennedy School’s recent decision to rebrand itself. Known as the Kennedy School of Government until last spring, the public policy and administration changed its shorthand so that it includes the word “Harvard”.
Boston College: “University Spokesman Jack Dunn said, “Boston College’s ranking in this study serves as an affirmation of what we have long believed. Academic research and accomplishments along with media citations and this recent ranking are all affirmations of the growing steam of this university.” The major factors that contributed to BC’s high ranking were a well-published academic community, a strong public relations office, and a successful sports program in recent years.
Vanderbilt University: “… when prospective students, faculty, friends and neighbors hear ‘Vanderbilt’ they associate it with excellent academic programs, innovative research, world class health care, the best students, a gorgeous campus, a dynamic hometown, rockin’ athletics and more. And, by one measure at least, we’re succeeding.”
Chronicle of Higher Education: “[GLM’s TrendTopper analysis] is at least one measure of wealth, success and prestige,” Hoover said. “Even on campuses where presidents do not put too much stock into rankings themselves, it is something they must think about” because alums and top students pay attention to them. – Eric Hoover, marketing strategies, Chronicle of Higher Education, quoted in Harvard Crimson.
How TrendTopper enhances college reputation by differentiating ‘brand’ among peers
The Global Language Monitor today announced TrendTopper MediaBuzz Reputation Management (TMRM) solution for higher education. Using TrendTopper, colleges and universities can enhance their standings among peers by assessing their strengths and weaknesses in any number of areas. TrendTopper measures what is important to colleges’ and their various constituencies on the Internet, in social media, the blogosphere, as well as the global print and electronic media. TrendTopper can help colleges and universities distinguish themselves among peers – as well as helping ensure that key messages are getting though the clutter.
“At a time when a few students more or less can change an institution’s revenue stream from positive to negative, or mean an even bigger bite out of the endowment, brand equity moves from an interesting concept to an imperative,” said Paul JJ Payack, president of TrendTopper Technologies. “Movement within a Peer Group, expanding an institution’s Peer Group, or, even, moving from one Peer Group to another can spell ultimate success, or failure, for that particular institution.”
Colleges and universities have one more element that is critical to their ultimate success — the fact that they are linked to other colleges by reputation (Peer Groups or Cohorts), which extend in many ways beyond and across conferences and leagues. These include geographic proximity, religious affiliation, similar test scores, political outlook, or long-time sports rivalries,
Institutions can use TrendTopper methodologies to determine strengths and weaknesses vs. their peer group or any other criteria they find relevant, answering questions, such as:
• We have little knowledge of how we are perceived in Social Media. What we don’t know can’t be shaped. Can you help us there?
• How is our institution perceived by the public at large? We have a strong reputation among high school guidance counselors and peer assessments, but parents (and students) want to know about potential employers?
• We are known for our excellent liberal arts programs, but we feel our information technology offering lags in recognition. Our competitors annually enroll about 20% more students for what we see an equal (or even lesser) curriculum. What can we do?
• We know that we receive a large share of voice with our monthly survey from the econ department, what can we do to replicate this success?
• We don’t have a football [or lacrosse or dance or bioengineering] program. Everyone else in our peer group has one. Does it make a difference?
• Most students now go first to Wikipedia to find an answer. This applies Colleges and Universities, as well. We don’t agree with our Wikipedia assessment. What do we do here?
College and University Rankings
Global Language Monitor’s TrendTopper College and University Internet Rankings is published twice a year. The next Internet Rankings will be announced in April, 2009
The TrendTopper MediaBuzz Rankings is a way of seeing the schools through the eyes of the world at large. As with any brand, prospective students, alumni, employers, and the world at large believe that students who are graduated from such institutions will carry on the all the hallmarks of that particular school.
TrendTopper MediaBuzz Rankings remove all bias that we saw as inherent in each of the other published rankings, be they peer assessments, the opinion of high school guidance counselors, the ratio of endowment to number of students, number of left-leaning professors, and all the rest.
Many institutions of higher education, including Harvard, Boston College, and Vanderbilt have used the rankings as a validation of their recent reputation management decisions.
About The Global Language Monitor
Austin-Texas-based Global Language Monitor analyzes and catalogues the latest trends in word usage and word choices, and their impact on the various aspects of culture, with a particular emphasis upon Global English. For more information, call 1.512.815.8836, email email@example.com, or visit www.LanguageMonitor.com.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Global Language Monitor
Q.What is the Global Language Monitor?
A.The Global Language Monitor documents, analyzes, and tracks the latest trends in word usage and word choices and their impact on the various aspects of culture, with a particular emphasis upon Global English.GLM, an internet media analytics company, was founded six years ago in Silicon Valley.It is a direct descendent of yourDictionary.com, the premier multi-language dictionary site with some 230 languages.YDC had very deep academic roots with some two dozen of the world’s top linguists on its Academic Council of Experts.The Global Language Monitor is one of the first companies to exclusively focus on English as the first, true global language, and its impact on various aspects of culture, such as politics, the arts, entertainment, science, technology, and the like.The leading global media have come to rely upon GLM’s analysis and analytical techniques. The Global Language Monitor is based in Austin, Texas.Paul JJ Payack is the founding president of both companies.
Q.Who is Paul JJ Payack?
A.Paul JJ Payack is the president and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor. Payack was born in Morristown, New Jersey, and grew up in neighboring Boonton. (His twin-brother, Peter, is a poet, professor and the first ‘Poet Populist’ of Cambridge, Massachusetts.) Payack earned a scholarship to Bucknell University where he studied psychology and philosophy, took a year off to write his first book, A Ripple in Entropy, and transferred to Harvard University where he was graduated with a bachelor of arts, concentrating in comparative literature; he subsequently earned a CAGS. After an early stint in academia, Payack spent his career with a number of America’s most innovative technology companies, including such pioneers as Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC), Apollo Computer, Network Systems Corporation and Intelliguard Software, and Legato Systems. He was subsequently a senior executive for three Fortune 500 companies (including Unisys, D&B, and companies that were absorbed by SUN, EMC and HP) as well as a number of Silicon Valley start-ups, spin-outs and spin-downs.
Payack has served as an adjunct lecturer for the University of Massachusetts for some three years, and has spoken at the Federal Reserve Bank (NY), Hughes Electronics, The University of Texas (Arlington), and many other organizations and educational institutions.Payack is a frequent media commentator on technology, words, and language to such organizations as CNN, NPR, the BBC, Reuters, the New York Times, the Sunday Times (London), and thePeoples’ Daily (Beijing).
Payack’s penultimate book, A Million Words and Counting, was published as a Citadel Imprint by Kensington, New York in 2008; the quality paperback edition has just been released. (His latest book was an analysis of the Healthcare crisis in the US.)
For more extensive background information, check out Linkedin.
Q. So you are not a linguist?
A. I am most definitely not a linguist and have never claimed to be one. Over the years my titles have included (in order): Assistant Director of Admissions, Technical Writer, Engineer, Marketing Manager, Corporate Director, v.p., C.M.O., SVP, C.E.O., founder, co-founder, principal and now ‘Chief Word Analyst’.
Q. What is a ‘Chief Word Analyst’?
A. The New York Times, in 2006, was the first to mention our PQI technology in an article about The Power of Words, which used our technology to see if the NY real estate market was heading toward a collapse. In the article, Stephanie Rosenblum, described me as a ‘word analyst’. I thought that was an apt description and have used the phrase as my title ever since.
GLM’s motto is ‘Where Technology Intersects With the Word’ and that is precisely what we do — applying statistical techniques, numerical analysis and the latest in computer technology to the analysis of the the Internet, blogosphere, print and electronic media, and now so-called social media.The Global Language Monitor’s expertise is in applying these techniques to global English in its various manifestations.
Q. Linguists frequently spar with you in the media.
A. Linguistics is classified as a subfield of Anthropology. There are many subdivisions within the field and subdivisions within the various categories. So expertise in one of these areas is quite narrow. It’s analogous to being an engineer: chemical, industrial, electrical, computer, audio, and the like. So when you hear from a linguist, it helps to understand their particular field of expertise.
For the most part, linguists are neither technologists, nor media analysts, and as such they are but one constituency. Media analysts, technologists, and scholars in general not only encourage our work but also incorporate it into scores of peer-reviewed research, text books and so forth. The Global Media seeks out our analysis in ever increasing numbers.
Q. We read that in an interview you once reversed Barack Obama’s name?
A. True. We’ve also been cited for typos, Word-clock malfunctions, mathematical errors, and so forth. All true.
One of the many wonders of the Internet is that every mistake you make will be remembered indefinitely (and magnified, if at all possible). And then there is the near-endless replication of hear-say, invective, or worse. I find it reassuring that anyone looking beyond the dozens of competing narratives swirling about one’s person, has good old-fashion ‘primary sources’ readily available at the click of key.
Q. Why was there such controversy about the Million Word March?
A. Linguists believe that there is no way to count words, since the nature of what a word is, itself, is in dispute.Hence you cannot count what you cannot define.More so, even attempting to take a measure of the language is to be condemned.
Q. Don’t unabridged dictionaries have all or most of the words in the language, according to a rigid set of criteria. Can’t you just count them?
A. Apparently not without great difficulty. We, too, are mystified by this.
Q. Google and Harvard University recently launched the Google Books Ngram Viewer. They also calculated the number of words in the English Language. How does that compare to the number that your obtained from the Global language Monitor’s algorithmic-based analysis?
Google Validates GLM’s No. of Words in English Prediction
GLM/Google vs OED and Webster’s 3rd
The above graphic is from the AAAS /Science as reported on NPR. At the time the New York Times article on the historic threshold famously quoted several dissenting linguists as claiming that “even Google could not come up with” such a methodology. Unbeknownst to them Google was doing precisely that.
The number of words in the English language according to GLM now stands at: 1,010,649.7. The difference between the two analyses is .0121%, which is widely considered statistically insignificant.
Google’s number, which is based on the counting of the words in the 15,000,000 English language books it has scanned into the ‘Google Corpus,’ mirrors GLM’s Analysis. GLM’s number is based upon its algorithmic methodologies, explication of which is available from its site.
Q. The 1,000,000 word was ‘web 2.0;’ a number of lexicographers seemed to think this was not a word because it contains letter and a number and even a bit of punctuation. Is it a word?
A. It’s a lexical unit. Think about this for a moment: is O.K. a word? Or 24/7, or w00t. or 3-D? There is a long history of English words with numbers (or punctuation) intermixed. And it is a burgeoning trend; it’s called L33t Speak. Check the New York Times, where you will find and goodly amount of headlines featuring Government 2.0 or Healthcare 2.0, and the like.
Q.What is the methodology?
A.The Global Language Monitor first established a base number of words in the language using the number of words in the generally accepted unabridged dictionaries (the O.E.D., Merriam-Webster’s, Macquarie’s, etc.), that contain the historic ‘core’ of the English language, including every word found in the historical codex of the language beginning with Beowulf, Chaucer, the Venerable Bede, on to the works of Shakespeare, the King James Bible, and the like.
The Global Language Monitor’s proprietary algorithm, the Predictive Quantities Indicator tracks the frequency of words and phrases in the global print and electronic media, on the Internet, throughout the Blogosphere, in social media as well as accessing proprietary databases (Factiva, Lexis-Nexis, etc.).
GLM then assigned a number to the rate of creation of new words and the adoption and absorption of foreign vocabulary into the language. The result, though an estimate, has been found to be quite useful as a starting point of the discussion for lay persons, students, and scholars the world over.
Q.A million sounds like a lot of words?
A.The Global Language Monitor’s estimate of the Number of Words in the English Language, is taking a relatively conservative approach. For example, the Introduction to Merriam-Webster’s 3rd International claims it was limited to the 450,000 words listed in that dictionary, because “the number of words available is always far in excess of and for a single volume dictionary many times the number that can possibly be included”. Many times the 450,000 included words, results in a number far in excess of 1,000,000. In fact, if you included all the scientific terms, all the jargon, and all the species of like, you could claim tens of millions of words.
Q. So it is rather difficult to estimate the number of English Words.
A. Nearly impossible. But, of course, you can make the same argument for anything a human being can measure: the number of stars in the galaxy, the number of galaxies in the universe, the number of people on the planet, the depth of the oceans, fish in the sea, moves possible on a chessboard, throughput of the latest supercomputer, amount of CO2 in the atmosphere (and hence predict Global Warming), even the number of planets in the Solar System (Take that, Pluto!).
Answers to questions like these have been settled, from the beginning of the scientific revolution and the Enlightenment, through a number of methodologies, including statistical analysis, and rigidly defining the subjects of study.We see no reason to exclude language from such inquiry.
Q.Did you count variations of words such as run, runs and running as separate words?
A.GLM counts only headwords, so run, runs, and running are only counted once.We do not count the named numerals as separate words, e.g., two hundred twenty-four thousand one hundred ten … one hundred eleven … one hundred twelve.Doing so would result in an infinite number of words since the set of named numerals is infinite.
Q. OK, sowhat makes English special?
A.The English language is not anymore special than any of the other 6,919 languages spoken on the planet.All languages are of great cultural value and are worthy of study and preservation.What is special about English, however, is the fact that it is has acquired an immense number of words and is the first truly global language. Of course, Greek was certainly spoken throughout that part of the world conquered by Alexander, as was Latin in the Roman Empire and later throughout Medieval Europe.And French was certainly the language of diplomacy in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.However English is the first language to literally span the globe.
Q.How many people now speak English?
A.In 1960, there were 250 million English speakers in the world, mostly in former British colonies; the future of English as a major language was very much in question.Today, English is spoken by some 1.85 billion people as their first, second or business language.
Q.Have your years in high technology influenced your thinking?
A.When I began in technology what would come to be known as the world wide web consisted of some 138 ‘endpoints’; today there are more than 8,000,000,000, more than one for every person on the planet.
My first computer system, was approximately 80 feet long and weighed hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds.Today, you carry all that computational power – and more – in the 4G phone in your pocket, just as your coffee maker is undoubtedly more powerful than all the computer systems aboard Apollo XI.
It is in this type of environment that one rarely ponders why something cannot be done, but rather how to do something that has never been done before.
Q. What about newly coined words of neologisms. What give GLM the authority to add new words into the dictionary?
A. In the English-speaking world there is no authority that judges the ‘worthiness’ of words to become an official part of the English Language, which is one reason why English has so many more words than many other languages.
AUSTIN, Texas December 8, 2010 (Updated) – The Global Language Monitor has announced the Top Words of 2011, yes 2011.
“Typically, we gather our top words throughout the year and rank them according to the number of citations, the size and depth of their linguistic footprint and momentum. To project possible top words for 2011, we analyzed the categories that we monitor and then choose words from each representative of various word trends,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of GLM. “Over the last ten years, we’ve frequently been asked the question, so this year we are providing our projections.”
The words are culled from throughout the English-speaking world, which now numbers more than 1.58 billion speakers.
Projected Top Words of 2011Rank / Word / Comments
Twenty-Eleven – The English-speaking world has finally agreed on a common designation for the year: Twenty-eleven far outstrips ‘two thousand eleven’ in the spoken language. This is welcome relief from the decade-long confusion over how to pronounce 2001, 2001, 2003, etc.
Obama-mess – David Letterman’s neologism for 2010 also works for 2011. This word is neutral. If Obama regain his magic, he escaped his Obama-mess; if his rating sinks further he continues to be engulfed by it.
Great Recession – Even the best case scenario has the economy digging out of this hole for the foreseeable future,
Palinism – Because the media needs an heir to Bushisms and Sarah Palin is the candidate of choice here.
3.0 – 2.0 has settled into the vocabulary in a thousand differing forms — Obama 2.0, Web 2.0, Lindsey Lohan 2.0, so we project 3.0 being used to ‘one-up’ the 2.0 trend.
9/11 – Next September is the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on US soil, so there is sure to be a great resurgence in use of the phrase.
Climate Change (or global warming) – Both of these phrases have been in the Top Ten for the last decade, so we see no reason the English-speaking public will abandon either or both of the phrases.
China/Chinese – The emergence of China is the Top Story of the Decade and there is little indication that is emergence on the world stage will continue in the media.
Hobbit and/or Parseltongue – The blockbuster movies of 2011 will be sure to include Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 and the Hobbit (though the Hobbit premiers on Dec. 31) are sure to spin out some word or phrase that will remain memorable to the Earthly-audience.