Katrina

Media Abounds With Apocalyptic-type References in Coverage of Katrina hit counter script

Disaster, Biblical, Global Warming, Hiroshima Top List

Refugee’ vs. ‘Evacuee’

San Diego, Calif. September 7, 2005. MetaNewswire. In an exclusive analysis by The Global Language Monitor, the worldwide media was found to abound in Apocalyptic-type terminology in its coverage of the unfolding disaster of Hurricane Katrina in the American Gulf States. Using its proprietary PQI (Predictive Quantities Indicator) algorithm, GLM found the ominous references to include: Disaster, Biblical, Global Warming, Hiroshima/Nuclear bomb, Catastrophe, Holocaust, Apocalypse, and End-of-the-World.

These alarmist references are coming across the spectrum of print and electronic media, and the internet,” said Paul JJ Payack, president of GLM. “The world appears stunned that the only remaining super power has apparently been humbled, on its own soil, by the forces of nature.”

The global media are mesmerized by the constant bombardment of television images of apparently rampaging, out-of-control elements, apparently in control of a good part of New Orleans, as well as the inability of the authorities to keep their own people fed, sheltered, evacuated, and, even, from dying on the street.

Refugee vs. ‘Evacuee’

GLM’s analysis found, for example, that the term for the displaced, refugees, that is usually associated with places like the Sudan and Afghanistan, appeared 5 times more frequently in the global media than the more neutral ‘evacuees,’ which was cited as racially motivated by some of the Black leadership. Accordingly, most of the major media outlets in the U.S. eliminated the usage of the word ‘refugees’ with a few exceptions, most notably, the New York Times.

The September 3 edition of The Times (London) has a story to illustrate the current state of affairs. The head: “Devastation that could send an area the size of England back to the Stone Age.”

The first 100 words sum up the pervasive mood found in the GLMs analysis of the Global Media.

AMERICA comes to an end in Montgomery, Alabama.For the next 265 miles to the Gulf Coast, it has been replaced by a dangerous and paranoid post-apocalyptic landscape, short of all the things fuel, phones, water and electricity needed to keep the 21st century switched on. By the time you reach Waveland, Mississippi, the coastal town of 6,800 where corpses lie amid a scene of Biblical devastation, any semblance of modern society has gone. “

According to GLM’s analysis, the most frequently used terms associated with Hurricane Katrina in the global media with examples follow. The terms are listed in order of relative frequency.

  • Disaster — The most common, and perhaps neutral, description. Literally ‘against the stars’ in Latin. Example: ” Disaster bares divisions of race and class across the Gulf states”. Toronto Globe and Mail.
  • Biblical — Used as an adjective. Referring to the scenes of death, destruction and mayhem chronicled in the Bible. ” …a town of 6,800 where corpses lie amid a scene of Biblical devastation”. (The Times, London)
  • Global Warming — The idea that the hand of man was directly responsible for the catastrophe, as opposed to the more neutral climate change. “…German Environmental Minister Jrgen Trittin remains stolid in his assertion that Hurricane Katrina is linked to global warming and America’s refusal to reduce emissions.” (Der Spiegel)
  • Hiroshima/Nuclear Destruction — Fresh in the mind of the media, following the 60th anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. “Struggling with what he calls Hurricane Katrina’s nuclear destruction, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour shows the emotional strain of leading a state through a disaster of biblical proportions”. (Associated Press).
  • Catastrophe — Sudden, often disastrous overturning, ruin, or undoing of a system. “In the Face of Catastrophe, Sites Offer Helping Hands”. (Washington Post)
  • Holocaust — Because of historical association, the word is seldom used to refer to death brought about by natural causes. ” December’s Asian catastrophe should have elevated “tsunami” practically to the level of “holocaust” in the world vocabulary, implying a loss of life beyond compare and as callous as this might make us seem, Katrina was many things, but “our tsunami” she wasn’t. (Henderson [NC] Dispatch)
  • Apocalypse — Referring to the prophetic visions of the imminent destruction of the world, as found in the Book of Revelations. ” Call it apocalyptic. Whatever you want to call it, take your pick. There were bodies floating past my front door. ” said Robert Lewis, who was rescued as floodwaters invaded his home. (Reuters)
  • End of the World — End-time scenarios which presage the Apocalypse. ” “This is like time has stopped Its like the end of the world.” (Columbus Dispatch)

Then there are those in the media linking Katrina with the direct intervention of the hand of an angry or vengeful God, though not necessarily aligned with Americas enemies. “The Terrorist Katrina is One of the Soldiers of Allah, But Not an Adherent of Al-Qaeda,” was written by a high-ranking Kuwaiti official, Muhammad Yousef Al-Mlaifi, director of the Kuwaiti Ministry of Endowment’s research center. It was published in Al-Siyassa. (Kuwait).

List of Top Ten Hurricanes

Etymology of the Name Katrina > Catriona > Katherine

Top Ten Disasters in US History

The Climate Change Question

Retired Hurricane Names

Future Hurricane Names (Global)

Note: Hurricane Alpha has now been named marking the busiest Atlantic Hurricane season on record … therefore the tropical ‘events’ were named beta, then gamma, delta … and it seemed they would go on through the Greek Alphabet. Here’s the entire Greek Alphabet:

 

Katrina Disaster Buzzword Explainer

San Diego, Calif. September 2, 2005. MetaNewswire. The Global Language Monitorin response to worldwide demand, has created this Hurricane Disaster Buzzword Explainer to help readers understand the many buzzwords, acronyms, and odd turns of phrase that are being employed in relation to the Hurricane Katrina disaster in New Orleans as it unfolds.

GLM’s List is an ongoing compilation, updated daily; we welcome contributions from around the globe.

The current list with associated commentary follows:

Acadians — French-speaking people who were expelled from Nova Scotia exactly 250 years ago and settled in the bayou. Subject of the epic poem, Evangeline, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. See Cajun.

Army Corps of Engineers — The USACE is responsible for investigating, developing and maintaining the nation’s water and related environmental resources.

Astrodome — The first enclosed stadium in the US; refugees from the SuperDome will be transported 350 miles to the Astrodome.

Bayou — A slow moving stream or river that runs through the marshlands surrounding New Orleans; home of Cajun Culture.
Big Easy — The nickname for the city of New Orleans, from the laidback lifestyle one finds there.

Breach — Sudden overpowering of a levee, or a floodwall, that allows water to seep or rush in.

Cajun — Literally, Louisianan who descends from French-speaking Acadians, who in 1755 were expelled from Nova Scotia.

Category — The intensity of a hurricane using various measurements including velocity of sustained wind. Categoies range from 1 (weakest) to 5 (strongest). Katrina peaked at Category 5.

Climate Change — The warming of the Earths atmosphere due to natural cycles (politically sensitive; believed to be primarily outside the control of man.) See Global Warming.

Creole — Derives from the Latin creare, meaning “to create.” By the nineteenth century, black, white, and mixed-race Louisianans used the term to distinguish themselves from foreign-born and Anglo-American settlers.

Cyclone — A developing tropical storm, rotating counterclockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere. Often confused with but NOT a tornado.

Eye — The center of the hurricane where the skies are clear and the wind is nearly calm.

FEMA — Federal Emergency Management Agency, branch of the US Homeland Security Department. FEMA coordinates the US Federal government’s response to national disasters.

Floating Casinos — Casinos located along the Mississippi coast bringing an annual average revenue of $2.7 billion a year to that state.

Flood Control — The building of levees, pumping stations, sea walls, etc. to keep a city safe from flooding.

Flood Stage — Flood stage is reached when the water in a stream or river over-tops the banks or levees along the banks.

Flood Wall — Narrow, steel and concrete barrier erected to keep the Mississippi River out of New Orleans.

French Quarter — The original living area of the city, now known for Jazz, Cajun cuisine, and Carnival. Located at the highest point of the city.

Global Warming — In theory, the warming of the Earths atmosphere caused primarily by human use of fossil fuels (Politically sensitive; believed to be primarily in the control of man.) See Climate Change.

Hurricane Names — Hurricanes have been named since 1953. Currently, the World Meteorological Organization maintains the alphabetically sorted list of alternating men’s and women’s names. The list was exclusively female until 1979. Names are recycled every 6 years. Influential hurricanes have their names retired.

Hurricane — A tropical cyclone with a sustained surface wind is 74 mph (118 kmh) or more. A hurricane is called a typhoon in the Pacific Ocean.

Hurricane Scale — See Categories.

Hurricane Season — The hurricane season in the Atlantic runs from June 1 to November 30; in the Eastern Pacific, the season begins on May 15 and ends on November 30.

Hurricane Watch/Warning — An official warning that a hurricane is expected to hit a specific area of the coast with 36 hours (watch) or within 24 hours (warning).

Isobar — Isobars around a cyclone are lines on a map that signify the same barometric pressure.

Katrina — The 11th tropical storm of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season.

Knot — Wind speed equal to 1.15 Miles Per Hour (MPH) or 1.9 Kilometers Per Hour (KM/HR).

Lake Pontchatrain — Actually, an arm of the sea that borders on New Orleans. Lake Pontchatrain is half the size of the state of Rhode Island.

Levee — Colossal earthen barriers erected to keep water out of the city. Once breeched, levees hinder relief efforts by holding the water inside the city. New Orleans has 350 miles of hurricane levees; they were built to withstand a fast-moving Category 3 storm. Katrina was a Category 4+ storm.

National Guard — Military units organized at the state level to protect the citizens of an individual state.

Norlins — Local pronunciation of the name of the city of New Orleans.

Public Health Emergency — Cholera and typhoid are among the concerns caused by contaminated water.

Pumping Stations — Massive, yet old and inefficient pump houses that would keep any seepage out of New Orleans.

Recovery — To recover the dead after search and rescue operations are complete.

Relief and Response Effort — To provide food, medical supplies and shelter to refuges of a disaster.

Sandbag — Three- to twenty-thousand pound burlap-type containers dropped from Chinook helicopters to plug breaches in levee.

Saffir-Simpson Scale — Used to give an estimate of potential damage and flooding along the coast. Wind speed is the determining factor in the scale. See Category.

Search and Rescue — To search for survivors.

Storm Surge — Sudden rising of the sea over its usual level, preceding the arrival of a hurricane. The Thirty-foot surge on the Mississippi coastline was the highest ever recorded for North America.

Superdome — Home to the New Orleans Saints football team, the Sugar Bowl and numerous professional football championships (Super Bowls).

Tropical Depression — An area of intense thunderstorms becomes organized into a cyclone. Maximun sustained winds reach 34 knots. There is at least one ‘closed’ isobar with a decrease in barometric pressure in the center of the storm.

Tropical Storm — Sustained winds increase to up to 64 knots and the storm begins to look like a hurricane.

Vertical Evac — Vertical evacuation, taking refuge in the topfloors of a high-rise building. In this case, this sort of evacuation often proved fatal.

 

 

 

 

 

yoofSpeak

Top US youthSpeak Words

A’IGHT All Right. As in, “That girl is nice, she’s a’ight.”

BANK: Has lots of flow (see also: flow)

BIZZNIZZLE: Business. As in “None of your bizznizzle!” Part of the Snoop Dogg/Sean John-inspired lexicon.

BLING: Originally bling bling, the sounds of jewelry (preferably diamonds and gold) clinking together, bling now refers to any expensive or ostentatious jewelry.

CHILLIN’: Relaxing, especially with friends

COOL: Still a cool word, even after all these years

CRUNK: A Southern variation of hip-hop music. Also means fun or amped.

DOPE: (1) Excellent, cool, tight, or phat. As in, “That’s totally dope!” (2) Fine, good

FLOW: Money. Originally from ‘cash flow’. (see also: bank)

FOSHIZZLE: Variation of ‘for sure’, popularized by rapper Snoop Dogg.

 

FRESH: Smooth, great-looking

GIVE IT UP! Replaces the square “Please applaud for…”

 

HELLA: An intensive: hella tight or hella phat.

HOTTIE: Object of affection, either personally or in the cultural milieu.

 

MAD: A lot. As in, “She has mad money.”

PEACE (or PEACE OUT): “See you later.”

PHAT: Way cool, as in ‘rolling phat’.

 

PIMPIN: Good with women (Also playa)

POPPINS: Perfect, from ‘Mary Poppins is perfect in every way.’

 

PROPER: Right, correct; a recycled Briticism.

PROPS: Respect or credit. As in, “He gets mad props!” Can also be used in place of cheers or congratulations.

RICE ROCKETS: Tricked out Japanese compact cars, as opposed to American ‘muscle’ cars.

SHUT UP! ‘Really?’

 

SICK: Hella cool!

SIDE SHOW: The temporary cordoning off of a freeway, done to perform outrageous car stunts in tricked-out rice rockets.

SNAG: Sensitive New-Age Guy.

 

STOG: Cigarette, short for ‘stogy’ or “stogie”.

SWEATIN: Irritating, bugging. As in `He’s really sweatin’ me!`

TIGHT: Cool

TRICKED OUT: Souped-up.

 

WASSUP?, WHAT UP?, and S’UP?: Popular variations of “What’s up?” or “What’s going on?”

WORD: “That’s good,” “That’s OK,” or “That’s right.”

Bonus Youthspeak Phenomenon of Note:

UP TALKING: Ending all sentences with a rising or upward inflection, as if asking a question.

The Top Ten Global YouthSpeak Words for 2006:

1. Yoof Speak – Pan-Asian term for YouthSpeak.

2. Ballin’ – Doing well; fine; as in he’s really ballin’ now.

3. Stick Ice – Chinese YouthSpeak for ‘popsicle’ or ice cream cone.

4. ii – Siigniifiies the text messaging style of doubliing the letter ii wherever iit iis found. (Very gee or preppy).

5. Ya-ya papaya – Snooty person (Singlish from Singapore).

6. 1 – From the U2 song One Love. Sign-off to Instant Messages.

7. =^..^= The emoticon representing a kitty.

8. Get up One’s Nose – Irritates, as in ‘He gets up my nose!’ (UK).

9. LMAO – Texting abbreviation for Laughed My Ass Off.

10. Yobbo – An unrefined or loutish youth (Aussie/UK).

The Top Global YouthSpeak Words for 2005 were: 1. Crunk — A Southern variation of hip hop music; also meaning fun or amped. 2. Mang — Variation of man, as in “S’up, mang?” 3. A’ight — All Right, “That girl is nice, she’s a’ight”.

Read More About the Top Words of 2006

The Top Ten Global YouthSpeak Words For 2005:

counter customizable free hit 1. Crunk: A Southern variation of hip hop music; also meaning fun or amped.

2. Mang: Variation of man, as in “S’up, mang?”

3. A’ight: All Right, “That girl is nice, she’s a’ight”

4. Mad: A lot; “She has mad money”

5. Props: Cheers, as in “He gets mad props!”

6. Bizznizzle: This term for” business” is part of the Snoop Dogg / Sean John-inspired lexicon, as in “None of your bizznizzle!’

7. Fully: In Australia an intensive. as in ‘fully sick’.

8. Fundoo: In India, Hindi for cool

9. Brill! From the UK, the shortened form of brilliant!

10. “s’up”: Another in an apparently endless number of Whazzup? permutations.

Southern California YouthSpeak Bonus: Morphing any single syllable word into 3, 4 or even 5 syllables.

Last year the Top YouthSpeak terms were: Word, Peace (or Peace out), and Proper.

Politics


Complete Coverage of the 2008 Elections

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Nicholas D. Kristof: Obama and the war on brains

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Obama “Yes, We Can” Speech Ranked With “I have a Dream,” “Tear Down this Wall,” and JFK Inaugural

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Austin, TX, USA November 7, 2008 – In an analysis completed earlier today, the Global Language Monitor has found that Barak Obama’s “Yes, We Can” speech delivered Tuesday night in Chicago’s Grant Park ranked favorably in tone, tenor and rhetorical flourishes with memorable political addresses of the recent past including Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I have a Dream” speech, “Tear Down his Wall,” by Ronald Reagan and John F. Kennedy’s Inaugural Address. GLM, has been tracking the language used in the debates and speeches of the Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates throughout the bruising 2008 campaign. In nearly every category, from grade level to the use of passive voice, even the average numbers of letters in the words he chose, Obama’s Victory Speech was very similar in construction to the speeches of King, Reagan and Kennedy.

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Obama Speech a Winner

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“As is appropriate for a forward-looking message of hope and reconciliation, words of change and hope, as well as future-related constructions dominated the address,” said Paul JJ Payack President and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor. “Evidently, Obama is at his best at connecting with people at the 7th to 8th grade range, communicating directly to his audience using simple yet powerful rhetorical devices, such as the repetition of the cadenced phrase ‘Yes, we can’, which built to a powerful conclusion.”


Obama’s Victory Speech also was similar in construction to his 2004 Democratic Convention address, which first brought him to widespread national attention.


The statistical breakdown follows.

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Obama Victory Speech Obama 2004 Convention
Words 2049 2238
Sentences/Paragraph 1.8 2
Words/Sentence 18.9 20.0
Characters/Word 4.2 4.3
Reading Ease 72.4 67.5
Passive 11% 8%
Grade Level 7.4 8.3

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For a future-oriented message of hope and vision the passive voice was used frequently but effectively. Examples include: “There will be setbacks and false starts. It was also noted that Obama spoke in the authoritative voice of the future Commander-in-Chief with such phrasings as, “To those who would tear the world down – We will defeat you. Some commentators noticed the absence of the collapse of the World Trade Center’s Twin Towers in the 2001 terrorist attacks from Obama’s catalogue of significant events of last 106 years.

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Historical comparisons follow.

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Kennedy Inaugural Address 10.8
Reagan ‘Tear Down This Wall” 9.8
Lincoln “Gettysburg Address” 9.1
Martin Luther King: ”I have a dream” 8.8
Obama 2004 Democrat Convention 8.3
Obama Victory Speech “Yes, we can” 7.4
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Change’, ‘Cataclysmic Events,’ and ‘Global Financial Tsunami’ Dominate Concerns of the American Electorate on Nov. 4

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Austin, TX, USA November 4, 2008 – In an analysis completed just hours before voting began for the 2008 the USPresidential Elections, Austin, Texas-based Global Language Monitor has found that ‘Change’, ‘‘Cataclysmic Events,’ and ‘Global Financial Tsunami’ related words and phrases dominate the Top Ten Concerns of the American Electorate on Nov. 4, 2008.

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The results are based on an on-going 18-month analysis of the political language and buzzwords used throughout the presidential since before the primaries began.  GLM’s uses its PQI Index, a proprietary algorithm that scours the global print and electronic media, the Internet, and blogosphere for ‘hot’ political buzzwords and then ranks them according to year-over-year change, acceleration and directional momentum.

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Political buzzwords are terms or phrases that become loaded with emotional freight beyond the normal meaning of the word.

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Top Ten Concerns of the American Electorate on November 4, 2008.


1. Change is key. Change favors Obama over McCain 3:2.

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2. Cataclysmic events, global warming and climate change rank higher than all other issues except change.

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3. The Global Financial Tsunami and related terms permeate the Election and is that persistent low-humming heard in the background.

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4. Experience counts. Experience favors McCain over Obama 4:3.

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5. Concerns persist about Obama’s experience, background, and past and current associations.

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6. Gender is ongoing issue: it began with Hillary and continues with Palin though it is disguised in all sorts of well-meaning platitudes.

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7. For many in this campaign, gender actually trumps race.

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8. For all the concern about race, it actually seems to be having a positive effect on the Obama campaign, in its an ongoing, just beneath the surface dialogue, with millions (both black and white) voting for Obama precisely BECAUSE he is a black man. This is viewed as separating us (and in some sense liberating us) from a long, painful history.

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9. Working Class Whites IS used as a code word for whites who are working class. No other moniker, such as Reagan Democrats or Soccer Moms has caught on in this election cycle.

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10.  Obama, to his great credit, is no longer perceived as ‘aloof’.

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What’s the advantage of the PQI over the Polls?

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The PQI is, perhaps, the ultimate ‘It is what it is’ measurement of consumer (and in this case Political) sentiment. The PQI simply measures the occurrence of certain words or phrases in the print and electronic media (traditional or otherwise), on the Internet, and across the Blogosphere. It is by its very nature non-biased. When we take a statistical snapshot for the PQI there is no adjustment for ‘underrepresented’ groups, there are no assumptions about probability of turnout, the proportions of newly registered voters, traditional models, or expanded modularities. Rather we take our measurements, check for the rate of positive or negative change in the appearance of a searched word or phrase (what we call velocity and) and publish our results. In other words, it is what it is. Using this methodology, GLM was the only media analytics organization that foresaw the ’04 electorate voting with their moral compasses rather than their pocketbooks.”


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The Top Political Buzzwords for the 2006 Midterm Elections included:  Throes, Quagmire, Credibility, Global Warming, and Insurgency; the Top Political Buzzwords from the 2004 Campaign included:  Swift Boats, Flip Flop, Quagmire, Fahrenheit 911, Misleader, and Liar!


Top 10 Things Political Buzzwords Tell Us About the Vote


Austin, TX, USA November 3, 2008 – In an analysis completed just 48 hours before the US Presidential Elections theGlobal Language Monitor has announced the final installment of the Top Political Buzzwords of the 2008 Presidential Campaign. GLM, has been tracking the buzzwords in this election cycle for some eighteen months.

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Political buzzwords are terms or phrases that become loaded with emotional freight beyond the normal meaning of the word. For example, the word surge has been in the English-language vocabulary since time immemorial.  However, in its new context as an Iraq War strategy, it inspires a set of emotions in many people far beyond the norm.


  1. The electorate appears to be more advanced in its thinking than either party (or platform). Taken as a whole their concerns center upon uncontrollable, cataclysmic events such as the global financial meltdown and climate change (Nos. 1 and 2), while raising taxes (No. 22) or cutting taxes (No. 27) are lesser (though still important) concerns.

  2. The phrase ‘Financial Meltdown’ has broken into the Top 20, jumping some 2600% in usage over the last month.

  3. Change is the topmost concern. Though change from what to what remains a good question. ‘Change’ is,without question the top word of this campaign. Both candidates are benefitting from the mantra; however Obama holds a 3:2 edge over McCain in this regard.

  4. The second-most discussed term of the campaign barely surfaces in most media reports, and this is the combination of ‘Climate Change’ and/or ‘Global Warming’.

  5. Experience (No. 5) counts. A lot. Especially, if that experience can serve as a guide through the current series of cataclysmic events. McCain edges Obama 4:3 in the experience category. But Obama is given significant credit as a quick (and judicious) study.

  6. Everyone is talking about race (No. 16) except, apparently, the electorate. It is a Top Twenty issue, but it’s nestled between Joe the Plumber and Obama’s smoking.

  7. Iraq is now a non-issue. No. 8, Surge,and its apparent success has settled the argument, so it is no longer a question of victory or defeat. Even Al Qaeda has lost its grip on the electorate, falling some 11 spots in two weeks.

  8. Palin (Nos 14 and 21) is a ‘go-to’ subject for the media and campaigns alike, with both sides thinking they gain tremendous leverage in her disparagement or apotheosis.

  9. Tony Rezko (No. 23), Acorn (No. 24) and Jeremiah Wright (No. 26) are indeed issues, but are viewed as minor, settled or both for the Obama campaign.

  10. The word, aloof, as related to Obama is no longer on the list.  At the end of the Primary season in June, it was No 14 and a major concern of the Obama campaign.  Obama has apparently overcome this sense of aloofness.

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The ranking of Top Election Buzzwords of the 2008 Presidential Campaign and commentary follow.

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Rank Comment
1 Change Obama has a 3:2 Edge over McCain with Change
2 Climate Change Global warming within 1/2 of 1% for the overall lead
3 Gasoline Up 2 this week as prices fall
4 Recession Does a global financial meltdown count as a recession?
5 Experience Down 2; McCain has 4:3 Edge Here
6 Obama Muslim A continued presence in Cyberspace
7 Subprime How we got into this mess in the first place
8 Surge One of the Top Words from ‘07 now taking a victory lap
9 “That one” Has spurred the Obama base with ‘I’m for That One’ slogans
10 “Just Words” Oh Hillary, what hath thou wrought?
11 Gender Up dramatically since fall campaign though down for week
12 Working Class Whites Still the object of much affection AND derision
13 Price of oil More discussion as price declines; up 5
14 Palin Swimsuit On SNL Alec Baldwin claimed Balin’s ‘way hotter in person’
15 Joe the Plumber Now making appearances with McCain; up 5
16 Racism (election) Belies all the media buzz; now in top 20
17 Obama smoking Down 5 but still in Top Twenty
18 Financial meltdown Now buzzworthy, indeed.
19 Wall Street Bailout As reality of global financial meltdown sets in, down 6
20 Internet fundraising Hangs in there as a hot buzzword at 20
21 Lipstick Drops dramatically over the last survey; down 10
22 Raise taxes Raise Taxes No 22; cut taxes No. 27.  Ho Hum.
23 Rezko Obama’s relationship with Tony Rezko gains one
24 Acorn Voter Reg Loses a couple as interest apparently wanes
25 Al Qaeda election Lurking beneath the surface but falls out of Top Twenty
26 Jeremiah Wright Dr. Wright remains on the radar though falling five more spots
27 Cut taxes Raise Taxes No 22; cut taxes No. 27.  Ho Hum.
28 Hockey Mom Causes headlines but not a top issue
29 Nuclear Iran Drops one more spot since last survey
30 Wash Talking Heads Not a good week for the Cognoscenti; down 15

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The ranking is determined by GLM’s PQI Index, a proprietary algorithm that scours the global print and electronic media, the Internet, and blogosphere for ‘hot’ political buzzwords and then ranks them according to year-over-year change, acceleration and directional momentum.  Using this methodology, GLM was the only media analytics organization that foresaw the ’04 electorate voting with their moral compasses rather than their pocketbooks.

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The Top Political Buzzwords for the 2006 Midterm Elections included:  Throes, Quagmire, Credibility, Global Warming, and Insurgency; the Top Political Buzzwords from the 2004 Campaign included:  Swift Boats, Flip Flop, Quagmire, Fahrenheit 911, Misleader, and Liar!

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Listen to the Interview on WNYC/PRI

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The Final Debate:  Obama & McCain Differ Sharply

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Obama Doubles Use of Passive Voice Over McCain

Memorable quotes: ‘Joe the Plumber’; ‘I am not President Bush’

Austin, Texas, USA.   October 16, 2008.  In a linguistic analysis of the final Presidential Debate between Barack Obama and John McCain, the Global Language Monitor has found that in sharp contrast to prior debates, Obama’s use of the passive voice doubled that of McCain (and was significantly higher than he typically uses).  The use of the passive voice is considered significant in political speech because audiences generally respond better to active voice, which they tend to view asmore direct.  On a grade-level basis, Obama came in at 9.3 with McCain scoring grade level, while McCain came in at 7.4, a difference of nearly two grade levels.  The debate took place at Hofstra University, in Hempstead, New York.

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The statistical breakdown follows.

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Obama McCain Difference
Words 7,146 6,562 584
Words/Sentence 19.4 15.2 4.2
Sentences/Paragraph 2.0 2.1 5%
Characters/Word 4.4 4.4 0%
Passive Voice (%) 6% 3% 100%
Reading Ease 62.6 68.6 6
Grade level 9.3 7.4 1.9

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Using industry-standard tools and techniques, GLM ranks the candidates’ speech on a number of levels from grade-reading level, the use of the passive voice, a reading ease score (the higher, the easiest to understand), the number of words per sentence, the number of characters per word, among others.

Again, word choice and usage speaks volumes,” said Paul JJ Payack, GLM’s President & Chief Word Analyst. “Obama came in at a higher grade level than his previous efforts, but McCain was somewhat easier to understand.  Obama’s significantly higher use of the passive voice combined with his frequent use of the word ‘I’ perhaps indicated an impatience with his opponent  last witnessed in his debates with Hillary Clinton.”

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Read:   L’Histoire’s    La Langue des Campagnes

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Obama used the personal pronoun, ‘I’ about 158 times in the debate, while McCain used the word some 119 times.

Memorable phrases include more than a dozen references to ‘Joe the Plumber,’ one Joe Wurzelbacher of Holland, Ohio, and John McCain’s ‘I am not President Bush’ retort to Sen. Obama’s attempt to link his policies to those of the current president.


Obama the Intellectual

Nicholas Kristof, The New York Times

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For comparison purposes, here are the results last week’s Town-hall style debate. That debate was notable in the fact that the questions asked by the audience outdistanced both Obama and McCain in the grade-level ranking category.  Perhaps, the most memorable phrase from that debate is perhaps ‘’That one!” the term McCain used to refer to Obama.  “That One” has already joined GLM’s analysis of the Top Political Buzzwords of the 2008 Campaign.


Obama McCain Difference
Words 7,146 6,562 584
Words/Sentence 19.4 15.2 4.2
Sentences/Paragraph 2.0 2.1 5%
Characters/Word 4.4 4.4 0%
Passive Voice (%) 6% 3% 100%
Reading Ease 62.6 68.6 6
Grade level 9.3 7.4 1.9

Top Buzzwords of Presidential Campaign: Two Weeks Out

  • Bailout falls dramatically; Experience and Gender Rise
  • ‘Change’ and ’Global Warming/Climate Change’ in statistical tie for top

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Austin, TX, USA October 21, 2008 – In an analysis completed just two weeks before the US Presidential Elections the Global Language Monitor has announced that Change and Climate Change remain in a statistical tie for top spot in its list of Political Buzzwords of the 2008 Presidential Campaign, with Bailout falling dramatically to No. 13.

“In the Change ranking, Obama outdistanced McCain by a 3:2 ratio, while in the No. 2 Experience ranking, McCain held a 3:2 edge over Obama,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor. “Joe the Plumber and ACORN voter registration references broke into the Top 25, at No. 19 and No. 22, respectively. In a related finding, Gender (No. 10) continued to rise as Race (No. 20) continued to fall, raising the question if gender is the new race?”

Political buzzwords are terms or phrases that become loaded with emotional freight beyond the normal meaning of the word.  For example, the word surge has been in the English-language vocabulary since time immemorial.  However, in its new context as an Iraq War strategy, it inspires a set of emotions in many people far beyond the norm.

The rank of Top Election Buzzwords, past rank, and commentary follow.


1. Change (1) — Obama has a 3:2 edge over McCain with Change

2. Climate Change (2) — Global warming within 1/2 of 1% for the overall lead

3. Experience (5) — McCain has 3:2 edge over Obama with Experience

4. Recession (4) — World economy imploding but still not officially a ‘recession’

5. Gasoline (6) — Up one as the price dropsa1

6. Obama Muslim Connection (8) — A persistent topic in Cyberspace; up 2

7. Subprime (7) — How we got into this mess in the first place

8. Surge (10) — One of the Top Words from ‘07 moving up ‘ 08 chart

9. “That one” (12) – The remark has spurred the Obama base: ‘I’m for That One’

10. Gender (9) – Is ‘gender’ the new ‘race’?

11. Lipstick (13) — Any talk of Lipstick seems to spur McCain-Palin base

12. Obama smoking (11) – Surprise here; continues to draw interest

13. Bailout (3) – Bailout, as a word, dramatically slipping as reality of the entire debacle sets in

14. “Just Words” (20) — Hillary’s comment on Obama still echoes through the media

15. Washington Talking Heads (21) – Up six this past week alone

16. Palin Swimsuit (24) – Fueled by Alec Baldwin on SNL: Balin’s ‘way hotter in person’

17. Al Qaeda (14) — Always lurking beneath the surface

18. Price of oil (15) – Weakens as price declines

19. Joe the Plumber (NR) – Breaks into Top 25 in debut

20. Race (16) – Continues to drop in media buzz

21. Jeremiah Wright (19) — Dr. Wright remains on the radar, down from No.2 at start

22. Acorn Voter Registration (NR) – Debuts in Top 25; dramatic move over last week

23. Internet fundraising (17) — Loses luster as story; down 6 more spots

24. Rezko (25) — Obama’s relationship with Tony Rezko breaks into Top 25

25. Raise taxes (18) Raise Taxes No 25; cut taxes No. 27: Are you Listening

Others

26. Hockey Mom (22) – Loses a bit of steam

27. Cut taxes (26) Both ‘cut’ and ‘raise’ down this week, again

28. Nuclear Iran (23) Peaked out at No. 18

The ranking is determined by GLM’s PQI Index, a proprietary algorithm that scours the global print and electronic media, the Internet, and blogosphere for ‘hot’ political buzzwords and then ranks them according to year-over-year change, acceleration and directional momentum.  Using this methodology, GLM was the only media analytics organization that foresaw the ’04 electorate voting with their moral compasses rather than their pocketbooks.

The Top Political Buzzwords for the 2006 Midterm Elections included:  Throes, Quagmire, Credibility, Global Warming, and Insurgency; the Top Political Buzzwords from the 2004 Campaign included:  Swift Boats, Flip Flop, Quagmire, Fahrenheit 911, Misleader, and Liar!

The US Presidential Election and the Financial Tsunami

Seemingly chaotic events reflect normalcy of new reality

A Historical Inflection Point

Austin, Texas, USA. October 13, 2008. The worldwide financial tsunami that has captured the attention of the worldwide media (as well as governments, corporations and ordinary citizens), has come to dominate one of the great quadrennial media events of the post-Modern era. No, we are not referring to the Olympics, most recently held in Beijing, or even football’s World Cup but, rather, the US Presidential elections.

The immediate effect of this unprecedented upheaval of global markets is the obfuscation of the clear lines of division offered by the opposing parties in the US Presidential Elections.

There is the sense that we are witnessing an unprecedented historical event; historical in the sense that we now appear to be standing astride (or atop) a cusp in history, a delta, a decision point, what is now called a point of inflection or inflection point.

Watching the nightly news and reading the traditional (for the last two centuries, that is) media, one has the distinct sense that what they perceive as unprecedented almost chaotic circumstances is actually that of the normalcy of the new reality, that of communications at the speed of light that the internet has foisted upon us.

We keep hearing about this most unusual of election cycles, but this is only true when looking through the prism (and historical construct) of the traditional news gathering operations. What is called the 24-hour News Cycle is actually just the tip of the Tsunami washing over the planet at a steady speed and ever-quicker pace. Indeed, the nature of the beast hasn’t change at all. It is our outdated techniques, that haven’t kept up with the new reality: News now emanates at the speed of thought, from tens of thousands or, even, millions of sources.

The nature of a Tsunami is little understood other than the tremendous damage it unleashes when it washes ashore. What we do know, however, is that a tsunami travels in exceedingly long waves (tens of kilometers in length) racing through the oceanic depths at hundreds of kilometers per hour. Only upon reaching the shore is its true destructive power unleashed for all to see (if they survive to witness it at all).

In the same manner, the traditional media become transfixed with the roiling surface seas but fail to acknowledge the more sustained and significant, movements occurring just beneath the surface.

The surface swirls about in fascinating eddies, but the true transformation is occurring as the nearly undetectable waves rush through the open sea only occasionally, though dramatically, making their way onto shore.

In the same manner, the traditional media focuses on the Twenty-four-hour News Cycle but seem to miss the strong and prevalent currents immediately beneath the surface. They vainly attempt to tie global, transformative, and unprecedented events to relatively parochial events and forces (the Reagan Years, the Clinton administration, Bush 41 and 43, the de-regulation initiatives of Alan Greenspan of ‘99) that are being all but over-shadowed (and –whelmed) by unyielding and all-but irresistible forces.

There is an almost palpable sense and correct sense that things are 1) changing forever, 2) out of our control (or even influence), and 3) will have a direct impact upon the planet for generations to follow.

What we can control, and make sense of, however, is a candidate’s wink, smirk or disdainful reference. We can emphatically pin down our opponents into convenient sound bites, hopefully contradicting earlier sound bites. Do you personally take responsibility for Climate Change? (Does the fact that New York City was beneath 5,000 feet of Ice a few dozen centuries ago influence your vote today? A yes or no will suffice!) Is your personal philosophy, whatever it might be, grounded in a belief system that I can systematically debunk and demean. (Yes or no.) Are you for or against atom smashers creating miniscule black holes that may or may not swallow up the Earth? (Answer yes and you are a barbarian; answer no and you have absolutely no respects of the future prospects of the human race.) Did you ever consider yourself a loser (at any point in your life)? Did you ever make the acquaintance of fellow losers?

Nevertheless, the US Presidential Election will proceed to its own conclusion on the first Tuesday of November in the year two thousand and eight.

For the preceding five years, The Global Language Monitor has attempted to clarify the course (and future course) of human events as documented in the English language. The tools at our disposal have sometimes allowed us to peer into events and trends that become, otherwise, obscured, by the ‘noise’ of the Twenty-four Hour News Cycle. Our goal was, and continues to be, to extricate (and explicate upon) the true currents underpinning the events we call news, and to better understand what they mean and how they are perceived with the new media reality in mind. For example, back in the days preceding the 2004 Presidential election cycle, GLM discovered the fact that once ideas, words and phrases were launched into the vast, uncharted, oceanic Internet, they do not, indeed, die out after twenty-four hours but, rather, travel in deep, powerful currents and waves (not unlike those of a tsunami) that only grow stronger as they make their ways to distant shores.

In this new reality, tsunami-like ideas pass through vast seas of information of the Internet, nearly undetected and often unmeasured, until they crash upon our shorelines, where their full power (and possibly fury) is unleashed. The fact that we only entertain them for 24 hours before they are dispatched into the archives of what is considered ‘past’ or ‘passed’ and readily discarded, is beyond the point. We often hear that ‘we’ve never seen anything like this’ before. Of course not. Think back a few hundred years to other information revolutions, such as that introduced along with mechanical type. What do you think the fortunate few thought when they first laid their eyes upon the works of Aristotle, the Bible, or the Arabic translations of Euclid? No one had ever seen anything like that before! Indeed. And astonishment will only become more so as the future unfolds.

 — Paul JJ Payack, President & Chief Word Analyst, The Global Language Monitor

Vice Presidential Debate Linguistic Analysis:

Palin at 10th Grade-level; Biden at 8th Grade-level

Palin’s use of passive voice highest of the 2008 Debates

Read about CNN’s take on the GLM debate analysis.

The Debate on the Debate on the

An Analysis of the Analysis

Austin, Texas, USA.   October 3, 2008. The first and only vice presidential debate of the 2008 Campaign has resulted in Governor Sarah Palin, the republican nominee for vice president speaking at a 10th grade level, with Senator Joe Biden coming in at an 8th grade level.  Also noteworthy was the fact that Gov. Palin’s use of passive voice was the highest (at 8%) of the 2008 Presidential and Vice Presidential debates thus far.  The analysis was performed by The Global Language Monitor (www.LanguageMonitor.com), the Austin, Texas-based media analytics and analysis company.

GLM ranks the candidates’ speech on a number of levels from grade-reading level, the use of the passive voice, ‘a readability’ score (the closer to one hundred the easiest to understand, the number of words per sentence, even the number of characters per word.

The statistical breakdown follows.

Vice Presidential Debate
Biden Palin Comment
Grade Level 7.8 9.5 Palin raises a few eyebrows here.
No. of Words 5,492 5235 This is a surprise; shows tremendous restraint on the normally loquacious Biden. Obama used 20 more words per minute than McCain.
Sentences/Paragraph 2.7 2.6 A statistical tie.
Words/Sentence 15.8 19.9 Palin even outdistances professorial Obama on this one; Obama scored 17.4
Characters/Word 4.4 4.4 Everyone has apparently learned that shorter words are easier to understand (rather than monosylablic words facilitate comprehension).
Passive Voice 5% 8% Passive voice can be used to deflect responsibility; Biden used active voice when referring to Cheney and Bush; Palin countered with passive deflections.
Ease of Reading 66.7 62.4 100 is the easiest to read (or hear).

Notes:  The excessive use of passive voice can be used to obscure responsibility, since there is no ‘doer of the action’.  For example, ‘Taxes will be raised’ is a passive construction, while ‘I will raise (or lower) taxes’ is an active construction.  Five percent is considered average; low for a politician.

By way of comparison, the ranking by grade-levels for historical debates follow.

Historical Contrasts Grade level
Lincoln in Lincoln-Douglas Debates 11.2
Joseph Lieberman 9.9
Ronald Reagan 9.8
John F. Kennedy 9.6
Sarah Palin 9.5
Richard Nixon 9.1
Dick Cheney 9.1
Michael Dukakis 8.9
Bill Clinton 8.5
Al Gore 8.4
George W. Bush 7.1
George H.W. Bush 6.6
Ross Perot 6.3

The number of words is considered approximate, since transcripts vary.

The methodology employed is a modified Flesch-Kincaid formulation.

The First Presidential Debate:

A ‘Linguistic Dead Heat’ — with One Exception

In true professorial fashion, Obama averages some 20 more words per minute

Austin, Texas, USA.   September 28, 2008. The first presidential debate of the 2008 Campaign resulted in a ‘Linguistic Dead Heat’ according to an analysis performed by The Global Language Monitor (www.LanguageMonitor.com).  In nearly every category, from grade level to the use of passive voice, even the average numbers of letters in the words they chose, the candidates remained within the statistical margin of error with one major exception.  In the Number of Words category that the candidates used to convey their messages, Obama, in true professorial style, outdistanced McCain by some thousand words, which breaks down to an average of about 20 more words per minute.

“As in the famous Harvard-Yale game back in 1968, Harvard declared a victory after securing a come-from-behind 29-29 tie.   In the same manner, both sides in the debate have declared victory in an essential deadlocked outcome,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of GLM. “Look at the debate as a football game.  Both teams effectively moved the ball.  However, the scoring was low, and the quarterbacks performed as expected, with McCain completing some excellently thrown passes only to have others blocked by Obama.  Obama’s ground game was more impressive, churning out the yards — but he had difficulty getting the ball over the goal line.”

The statistical breakdown follows.

McCain Obama
Sentences per paragraph 2.2 2.1
Words per sentence 15.9 17.4
Characters per word 4.4 4.3
Passive voice 5% 5%
Ease of Reading (100 Top) 63.7 66.8
Grade Level 8.3 8.2
Number of words (approximate) 7,150 8,068

Notes:  The excessive use of passive voice can be used to obscure responsibility, since there is no ‘doer of the action’.  For example, ‘Taxes will be raised’ is a passive construction, while ‘I will raise (or lower) taxes’ is an active construction.  Five percent is considered low.

What are they saying in China?

McCain’s Speech Comes in at the Third Grade Level

Most Direct of all Speakers at Either Convention

Palin & Obama Speech Score Nearly Identical

Austin, Texas, USA. September 7, 2008. (Updated)  In an exclusive analysis of the speeches made at the recently concluded Political Conventions, the Global Language Monitor found that John McCain spoke at a third grade reading level, meaning that his speech was the easiest to comprehend of any delivered at either convention. GLM also found that McCain scored the lowest of all convention speakers in use of the passive voice, an indication of ‘direct’ talk. Higher use of the passive voice is often view as an indicator of ‘indirect’ and more easily confused speech because the doer of the action is obscured: ‘Taxes will be raised’ rather than ‘I will raise taxes’.

In another finding, GLM found that both Sarah Palin’s and Barack Obama’s widely viewed (38 and 37 million viewers respectively), and much acclaimed acceptance speeches were closely similar, delivered in language that reflected a ninth grade (9.2 and 9.3 respectively) ‘reading level’.

The basic language evaluation stats are shown below.

John McCain Sarah Palin Barack Obama
3.7 9.2 9.3 Grade Level
1.9 1.3 1.5 Sentences / Paragraph
4.4 4.4 4.4 Letters / Word
79.1 63.8 64.4 Reading Ease (100 is easiest)
6.4 19.5 22.1 Words / Sentence
2% 8% 5% Passive Sentences

It is widely believed that shorter sentences, words and paragraphs are easier to comprehend.

The analysis was performed by the Global Language Monitor, the media analysis and analytics agency.

GLM used a modified Flesch-Kincaid formula for its analysis, which measures factors such as number of words in a sentence, number of letters in a word, the percentage of sentences in passive voice, and other indicators of making things easier to read and, hence, understand.

This release comes in at the second year of college level (14+). 

Warning: do not incorporate these words into presidential addresses.

Top Political Buzzwords of 2008 Primary Season

Listen to the interview here:

Change, Ill-chosen Words and Race Dominate

Comments by Michelle Obama, Jeremiah Wright and both Clintons

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Austin, TX July 2, 2008 MetaNewswire — ‘Change,’ ill-chosen words by Michelle Obama, Jeremiah Wright and both Clintons, and ‘Race’ were named the Top Political Buzz Words and Phrases of the Recently concluded primary season by the Global Language Monitor in its periodic survey. The Top Ten included ‘Just Words,’ ‘Misspoke,’ ‘Inevitability,’ ‘Aloof,’ and ‘Obama a Muslim?’

The word ‘change’ remains atop the chart as it has for the last six months, however Michelle Obama’s ‘proud of my country’ comments rocketed to the No. 2 position, up from No. 5 in the previous survey, knocking the comments by Rev. Wright from the No. 2 to No. 3 position.

The entire list is quite sobering, and rather surprising.  Sobering in the fact that the list is dominated by those issues and sound bites generated by the negative sides of the campaign.  The list is surprising in the fact that strong preponderance of the words and phrases are related to the Democratic campaign with just a handful from the Republican side,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor (GLM).

This Sunday, the contenders’ spoken words are talk of the day

Political buzzwords are terms of phrases that become loaded with emotional freight beyond the normal meaning of the word. For example, the word surge has been in the English-language vocabulary since time immemorial. However, in its new context as an Iraq War strategy, it inspires a set of emotions in many people far beyond the norm.

The Lede (New York Times):  Has the ‘surge’ been surging?

The ranking is determined by GLM’s PQI Index, a proprietary algorithm that scours the global print and electronic media, the Internet, and blogosphere for ‘hot’ political buzzwords and then ranks them according to year-over-year change, acceleration and directional momentum. Using this methodology, GLM was the only media analytics organization that foresaw the ’04 electorate voting with their moral compasses rather than their pocketbooks.

The Hindi’s take on the latest Political Buzzwords

The Top Political Buzzwords of the Primary Season of the 2008 Presidential Campaign follows with Ranking, Buzzword, Previous Ranking, and Comment.

  1. Change (1) – Number 1 buzzword of the Primary Season with an index rating 10X that of any other word or phrase..
  2. ‘Proud of my country’ (5) – In the last month alone, Ms. Obama’s ‘first time’ quote is up over 200% in citations.  Apparently, Michelle plays a far larger role in this campaign than many suspect.
  3. Jeremiah Wright (2) – Obama’s former pastor looms large in the media and on the web.
  4. Race – (4) The word actually means ‘lineage’. The numbers say it’s more significant than most would like to hear.
  5. Bill Clinton’s Jesse Jackson Comments (3) – Though fading, made a lasting impact and impression.
  6. Misspoke – (10) As did her Sniper Fire episode and subsequent explanation.
  7. Bosnian Sniper Fire (9) – Reverberations continued from Hillary’s ‘misspeaking’
  8. Just Words (6) – Clinton’s characterization of Obama’s eloquence has had an impact.
  9. Internet fundraising (8) – Obama’s adeptness in using the Internet as a primary source of funding was major buzz.
  10. Inevitability (7) – Mark Penn’s Inevitability Strategy still under discussion (and derision).
  11. Working Class Whites (12) – Discussion (with racial subtext) up some 500% from the beginning of the year.
  12. Thrown Under the Bus (13)– Directly related to Clinton’s Kitchen Sink Strategy but also said of Obama and Reverend Wright.
  13. Obama a Muslim? (14) – Though he is a proclaimed Christian, the question lingers.
  14. Aloof (15) — Obama demeanor has its drawbacks according to the PQI.
  15. Punditocracy (16) — Those inhabiting the Media Echo Chamber find themselves part of the story.
  16. Bitter (17) – Obama’s characterization of blue-collar Pennsylvania Whites to an audience of West-Coast supporters.
  17. Gender (18) — - According to the media buzz, not nearly the as dominating as the word race.
  18. Experience (19) – Hillary’s original argument no longer resonant as early in the primary season.
  19. Surge (20) – One of 2007’s Top Words, still used mainly in relation to Senator McCain.
  20. 100 Years War (21) – The original One Hundred’s Year War actually lasted 116 years.

Words dropped from the list:  Latte Liberal and Kitchen Sink Strategy.

The Top Political Buzzwords for the 2006 Midterm Elections included: Throes, Quagmire, Credibility, Global Warming, and Insurgency.

The Top Political Buzzwords from the 2004 Presidential Campaign included: swift boats, flip flop/flopping, quagmire, Fahrenheit 911, misleader and liar!

Political Buzzwords:

2008 Election Before the Primary Season

This disparate collection of buzzwords speaks volumes about today’s electorate,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor (GLM).  “We have an Iraq War strategy, a name, a corporate entity, and a commentary on a female candidate’s ‘neckline’ at the top of the list … and then it really gets interesting.”

To see the YouTube Announcement, click here

The ranking is determined by GLM’s PQI Index, a proprietary algorithm that scours the global print and electronic media, the Internet, and blogosphere for ‘hot’ political buzzwords and then ranks them according to year-over-year change, acceleration and directional momentum.  Using this methodology, GLM was the only media analytics organization that foresaw the ’04 electorate voting with their moral compasses rather than their pocketbooks.

The Top Political Buzzwords of the Presidential Campaign and Commentary follows.

1.  Surge — The ‘Surge’ surges to the No.1 Political Buzzword

2.  Obama — His name now qualifies as a buzzword.  This is quite unusual, though the name Hillary comes close.

3.  YouTube — Changing the nature of American Campaigning?

4.  Cleavage — Despite critics’ contentions, Hillary found to be a woman after all.

5.  Pardon — Furor over Libby pardon riles the news media.

6.  Live Earth — Rock the Earth lived up to its billing in ‘buzz’.

7.  Subpoena — Congressional subpoenas abound as predicted if a Democratically control congress were elected.

8.  Congress — Congress is now polling lower numbers that the President.  Congress as a dirty word:  another ‘C’ word?

9.  All-time Low — A constant description of the president’s ever falling poll numbers.

10. “I don’t recall.” — AG Alberto Gonzales used this phrase three score and thrice in one day of testimony.

Top Political Buzzwords for 2006

The Top Political Buzzwords for 2006 included:  Throes, Quagmire, Credibility, Global Warming, and Insurgency.

Rewind: June 13, 2006

First Political Buzzword Tracker of 2006 Portends Raucus Fight

Heading Into Mid-term Elections

Culture of Corruption: 56% Republican vs. 44% Democrat

San Diego, June 13, 2006 (Updated). For the last three years, GLM has been tracking political buzzwords as they appear in the print and electronic media (newspapers, television, radio, etc.) on the Internet and in the Blogosphere. Using our proprietary algorithm, the Political-Sensitivity Quotient Index or PQI, GLM has been able to see which buzzwords and catchphrases are moving in and out of use, thereby reflecting what the media are writing about as opposed to the opinions of the Talking Heads and Pundits.

Nota Bene (November 8, 2006): The Exit Polls, According to CNN, “Asked which issues were extremely important to their vote, 42 percent said corruption and ethics; 40 percent, terrorism; 39 percent, the economy; 37 percent, Iraq; 36 percent, values; and 29 percent, illegal immigration”.


GLM, in early June, found that the corruption and ethics tag was more tightly linked to Republicans than Democrats by a 56% to 44% margin. Apparently, the Democrats have transformed the Mid-term elections into a ‘national’ election, thus upturning the ‘all politics is local’ dictum that usually holds sway. Translating this early finding into a party-line vote: Democratic Majority of 244-191. CNN’s

HOUSE RACE Updated: 6:13 a.m. ET, Nov. 8: With 435 seats at stake, with 14 still undecided: 227-194 Democratic Majority

Rewind the Interview from May, 2006

Election Day PQI:

The Top 15 are still dominated by ‘Green’ and ‘Defense’

Fastest Risers:

No. 1 Hussein Guilty Verdict

No. 2 Iran Nuclear Weapon

San Diego, California November 7, 2006 – The Global Language Monitor’s Political-Sensitivity Quotient Index (PQI) has found that John Kerry’s ‘Stuck in Iraq’ remarks as well as the conviction of Saddam Hussein will both impact today’s Election. Kerry ‘Stuck in Iraq’ remarks debuted at (No. 8) on the list of politcally sensitive buzzwords, while and Hussein’s ‘Guilty’ verdict entered at (No. 11). This is in marked contrast to the 2004 General Election when the last-minute October and November ‘surprises’ (such as the Osama bin-Laden broadcast) were trumped by ‘moral values’. This effect was apparently alone recognized by GLM and was published the week before the vote.

The Top 15 are still dominated by ‘Green’ and ‘Defense’ issues. ‘Ethanol,’ ‘Global Warming,’ and ‘Climate Change Disaster’ are at No.’s 1, 2 and 15. ‘Al-qaeda,’ Bird Flu,’ and ‘Iran Nuclear Weapons’ Round out the Top 5. The Mark Foley scandal sits at No. 10, ‘Illegal Immigration’ at No. 13, ‘Rumsfeld Resignation’ sits at No.19 (about the same position he has maintained for the previous three years), and ‘Culture of Corruption’ comes in at No 20. Other hot button issues that have marked the campaign include ‘domestic spying’ that comes in at No.22 and the continued backlash against the ‘New Orleans’ fiasco still strong at No. 30. ‘North Korean nuclear weapons’ fell twelve spots to No. 41, a marked contrast to the question of ‘Iran Nuclear Weapons’ at No. 5.
Paul JJ Payack, President of the Global Language Monitor suggested that “over the last few years the PQI has proved to start where the polls and pundits leave off. This appears to be because the PQI provides a view of the underlying trends – and rapid movement — that the polls can’t possibly provide. The PQI is not dependent upon who is at home, GLM is not forced to ask ‘double-blind’ questions; since the PQI requires no questions at all.”
The Global Language Monitor’s Political-Sensitivity Quotient Index is a proprietary algorithm that measures ‘the buzz’ in the major print and electronic media, as well as on the Internet.” The data is anaylzed for change since the beginning of 2006, then quarterly, monthly and finally weekly. The basic premise is to analyze short-term variations (e.g., Mark Foley) in the context of the longer-term terms (e.g., bin-Laden).
The following data snapshot was analyzed on Sunday November 5 and updated on Monday November 6th, the day befor the Mid-term Election.

PQI Rank on Nov 6 — Buzzword

1 Ethanol
2 Global Warming
3 Al-qaeda
4 Bird Flu
5 Iran nuclear weapon
6 Impeach Bush
7 Conservative Politics
8 Kerry “stuck in Iraq”
9 Increased Tax Revenue
10 Mark Foley Scandal
11 Saddam Hussein guilty
12 Raise Taxes
13 illegal Immigration
14 Progressive Politics
15 Climate Change Disaster
16 Liberal Politics
17 Religious right
18 Cut Taxes
19 Rumsfield Resign
20 Culture of Corruption
21 Osama bin-Laden
22 Domestic Spying
23 Republican Majority
24 Quagmire Iraq War
25 Extreme Right Political
26 Hillary Clinton credibility
27 Bush Lame Duck
28 Filibuster Senate
29 Iraq War Insurgency
30 “New Orleans” Recovery
31 Religious Left
32 China World Stage
33 Losing War Iraq
34 War for Oil
35 George Bush Credibility
36 Nuclear Option Senate
37 Out of the Political Mainstream
38 Supreme Court Nomination
39 Democratic Majority
40 Fema New Orleans
41 “Nuclear weapon” North Korea
42 NSA Eavesdrop
43 Likeability Bush
44 Winning War Iraq
45 Gasoline Crisis

Fastest Risers Since Oct 22nd

1 Saddam Hussein guilty
2 Iran nuclear weapon

A Note About the Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI)

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, as well as accessing proprietary databases (Factiva, Lexis-Nexis, etc.). A keyword base index is created (including selected keywords, phrases, ‘excluders’ and ‘penumbra’ words), ‘timestamps’ and a ‘media universe’ are determined. The PQI is a weighted Index, factoring in: Long-term trends, Short-term changes, Momentum, and Velocity. As such it can create ‘signals’ that can be used in a variety of applications. Outputs include: the raw PQI, a Directional Signal, or a Relative Ranking with 100 as the base. There are two differing PQIs. When analyzing words and phrases in political contexts, GLM uses the Political-sensitivity Quotient Index; when analyzing words and phrases in any other context, GLM uses a slightly different Predictive Quantities Indicator.

Global Language Monitor Exclusive Analysis PQI October 26:
Electorate has a Clear Vision of the Future Both U.S. Parties Seem to Lack
‘Green’-Issues No. 1 and 2 but Al Qaeda Still No. 3
‘Winning the Iraq War’ Dead Last

San Diego, California October 26, 2006 — With two weeks to go before the mid-term election, the Global Language Monitor’s Political-Sensitivity Quotient Index (PQI) has found that the public seems to have a clear agenda and direction that both parties seem to lack. Green Issues, al-Qaeda and bin-Laden dominate the Top Ten, though the Mark Foley scandal makes its first appearance in ranking, as does ‘Impeach Bush’.
New Orleans’ in the context of Hurricane Katrina still festers at No.12, while ‘North Korean nuclear weapon’ debuts at No. 31, and ‘Iran nuclear weapon’ falls two positions from the previous run and occupies the 17th position. Perhaps notably, ‘Winning the Iraq War’ comes in dead last on the list of political phrases and buzzwords, at No. 43, immediatedly preceded by ‘gasoline crisis’.
“The combination of ‘green issues,’ long-term threats, and current enemies seems to define an electorate strongly conflicted by the two major parties lack of defined leadership in these core areas of belief. With neither party appealing to the electorate’s direct concerns, we see the the results being more of an ‘all politics is local’ phenomenon, and far less of the political upheavel most pundits and polls are predicting. The difference between the PQI and the polls is that the PQI provides a ten-month view of the underlying trends that the polls can’t possibly provide. In addition, the PQI is not dependent upon who is at home to pick up the phone at a particular hour of the day. Also, GLM is not forced to ask ‘double-blinded’ questions; since the PQI requires no questions at all. We simply measure what is found in the print, and electronic media, and the Internet, in their every changing mix and milieu,” Payack concluded.
The Global Language Monitor’s Political-Sensitivity Quotient Index is a proprietary algorithm that measures ‘the buzz’ in the major print and electronic media, as well as on the Internet.” The data is anaylzed for change since the beginning of 2006, then quarterly, monthly and finally weekly. The basic premise is to analyze short-term variations (e.g., Mark Foley) in the context of the longer-term terms (e.g., bin-Laden). The following data snapshot was analyzed for the week of October 23rd, two weeks before the election.

Rank on Oct 24 — Buzzword — Previous Ranking (10/10/2006)

1. Global Warming — Previously No. 1
2. Ethanol — Previously No. 3
3. al-Qaeda — Previously No. 2
4. Conservative Politics — Previously No. 4
5. Illegal Immigration — Previously No. 11
6. Flu — Previously No. 6
7. Supreme Court Nomination — Previously No. 7
8. Osama bin-Laden — Previously No. 5
9. Impeach Bush — Previously No. 8
10. Mark Foley — Previously No. 43
11. Religious Right — Previously No. 9
12. “New Orleans” Recovery — Previously No. 10
13. Climate Change Disaster — Previously No. 12
14. Increased Tax Revenue — Previously No. 15
15. Progressive Politics — Previously No. 16
16. Liberal Politics — Previously No. 44
17. Iraq Nuclear Weapons — Previously No. 17
18. Raise Taxes — Previously No. 20
19. Rumsfeld Resign — Previously No. 14
20. Cut Taxes — Previously No. 19
21. Domestic Spying — Previously No. 18
22. Republican Majority — Previously No. 23
23. Extreme Right Political — Previously No. 21
24. Iraq War Insurgency — Previously No. 25
25. Culture of Corruption — Previously No. 28
26. Losing War Iraq — Previously No. 22
27. George Bush Credibility — Previously No. 24
28. Senate Filibuster — Previously No. 26
29. Fema (New Orleans) — Previously No. 40
30. Hilary Clinton Credibility — Previously No. 27
31. North Korean Nuclear Weapon — Previously Unranked
32. Quagmire Iraq War — Previously No. 29
33. Bush Lame Duck — Previously No. 34
34. China on the World Stage — Previously No. 30
35. Religious Left — Previously No. 37
36. Nuclear Option Senate — Previously No. 35
37. War for Oil — Previously No. 36
38. Out of the Mainstream — Previously No. 39
39. Democratic Majority — Previously No. 38
40. NSA Eavesdrop — Previously No. 41
41. Likeability Bush — Previously No.42
42. Gasoline Crisis — Previously No. 45
43. Winning Iraq War — Previously No. 13

Top Political Buzzwords Index Belies Inside the Beltway Chatter

San Diego, California October 13, 2006 — In a world where polls themselves become the news, The Global Language Monitor’s Political-Sensitivity Quotient Index (PQI) smoothes out the highs and lows and lets you focus on the deeper trends.

Consider Mark Foley, there are about 21,000 stories on Notre Dame’s Saturday game to about 19,600 on Mark Foley.  Does this mean the Dems or GOP should be wrapping themselves in Norte Dame pennants?

Perhaps.

The Global Language Monitor’s Political-Sensitivity Quotient Index is a proprietary algorithm that measures what people are actually talking about on the web, blogs, the major print and electronic media.   We ran the PQI, as of Oct 7th, one month before the general election on Tuesday, November 7th.

Its results are counter intuitive to beltway thinking. This happened once before, when the PQI, the week before the 2004 Presidential Elections, signaled a strong shift to ‘value-based voting’ which was reported to the media, a week before the same was seen in the exit polls for the presidential elections.

If the present signal is true, both the Democrats and Republicans should focus on the issues that are driving what’s reflected in the PQI.  For example: Mark Foley appears as No. 43 — but Al-qaeda and Osama rank as No. 2 and 5.  The PQI seems to indicate that national security ranks far above the Mark Foley scandal.  And not some vague notion of ‘national security,’ but rather No. 2 Al Qaeda and No. 5 Osama bin Laden.  The PQI indicates that the American people know precisely who the enemy is.

And maybe Al Gore is a better politician that everybody thinks since his ‘platform’ topic ’global warming’ is currently No. 1 on the PQI.    Perhaps a ‘green party’ strong on national security would better reflect the mood reflected in the current PQI.

GLM has been publishing the PQI for some three years; it has been cited by the major global media hundreds of times.

Rank on Oct 7 — Buzzword — Previous Ranking (May 31)

1.  Global Warming — Previous Ranking No. 34
2.   Al-qaeda — Previous Ranking No. 35
3.   Ethanol — Previous Ranking No.  6
4.   Conservative Politics — Previous Ranking No.  7
5.   Osama bin-Laden — Previous Ranking No. 8
6.   Bird Flu — Previous Ranking No. 9
7.   Supreme Court Nomination — Previous Ranking No. 10
8.   Impeach Bush — Previous Ranking No. 12
9.   Religious right — Previous Ranking No. 13
10.   ”New Orleans” Recovery — Previous Ranking No. 14
11.   Immigration — Previous Ranking No. 1
12.   Climate Change Disaster — Previous Ranking No. 21
13.   Winning War Iraq — Previous Ranking No. 20
14.   Rumsfield Resign — Previous Ranking No. 19
15.   Increased Tax Revenue — Previous Ranking No. 26
16.  Progressive Politics — Previous Ranking No. 23
17.   Iran nuclear weapon — Previous Ranking No. 15
18.   Domestic Spying — Previous Ranking No. 18
19.   Cut Taxes — Previous Ranking No. 28
20.   Raise Taxes — Previous Ranking No. 25
Other interesting buzzwords and their rankings
21.   Extreme Right Political — Previous Ranking No. 36
22.   Losing War Iraq — Previous Ranking No. 11
23.   Republican Majority — Previous Ranking No. 30
24.   George Bush Credibility — Previous Ranking No. 27
25.   Iraq War Insurgency — Previous Ranking No. 24
27.   Hilary Clinton credibility
28.   Culture of Corruption — Previous Ranking No. 16
29.   Quagmire Iraq War — Previous Ranking No. 39
34.   Bush Lame Duck — Previous Ranking No. 38
36.   War for Oil — Previous Ranking No. 43
37.   Religious Left — Previous Ranking No. 5
38.   Democratic Majority — Previous Ranking No. 42
41.   NSA Eavesdrop — Previous Ranking No. 7
43.   Mark Foley Scandal — Previous Ranking (Not Ranked)

First Political Buzzword Tracker of 2006 Portends a Raucus Fight Heading Into US Mid-term Elections
Impeach Bush is No. 3 on the Year-to-Date List

For the past three years, GLM has been tracking political buzzwords as they appear in the print and electronic media (newspapers, television, radio, etc.) on the Internet and in the Blogosphere.

Using our proprietary algorithm, the Political-Sensitivity Quotient Index or PQI, GLM has been able to see which buzzwords and catchphrases are moving in and out of use, thereby reflecting what the media are writing about as opposed to the opinions of the Talking Heads and Pundits.

For example, in the 2004 Presidential Election, GLM’s PQI actually picked up the surge in moral values that became apparent to the pundits and polls only after votes were cast. (USAToday carried the story on the Monday before the vote.)

In fact, some 12 of the top 20 buzzwords GLM tracked were words and phrases that looked at the election through the prism of moral values from both the right and left perspective.

For the Mid-term elections GLM has set Dec. 31, 2005 as the beginning date of its analysis and has tracked some fifty buzzwords on a monthly basis since then. This is the first release of the PQI for the ‘06 Mid-term elections.

A new feature includes adding two words or phrases from popular culture (which will change throughout the cycle).   This should help to place the results in cultural context.

Also, for the first time, we are releasing the Top 25 Year-to-Date List directly following the primary list.

The Results follow:

1. Immigration — Up some 4,000% for the month; though Illegal immigration trails in the No. 12 spot.

2. Conservative Politics — Good, bad or indifferent, ‘conservative’ is on everyone’s lips.

3. Bird Flu — Yes, Avian Flu is higher than Al Qaeda, bin-Laden, the gasoline crisis (No. 35), domestic surveillience, etc.

4. Al-qaeda — High in the consciousness of the American people. Higher than even American Idol.

5. American Idol — This is America, after all.

6. Religious Left — Making a sudden splash to attempt to counter the religious right’s powerful influence.

7. Ethanol (also E85) — Pol’s would do themselves well to note that the yellow fuel far outdistances the “gas crisis”.

8. NSA Eavesdrop — Suddenly exploded by 4,000% in the last month.

9. Osama bin-Laden — Still ever present, lurking just beneath the surface.

10. FEMA — half a year after Katrina struck, FEMA still a major whipping boy.

11. DaVinci Code — Gained steam through the first four months of the year.

12. Illegal Immigration — Trails immigration, though the entire topic is now hot.

13. Supreme Court Nomination — Still resonating through the ether; quietly awaiting another slot to become available.

14. Losing War Iraq — Considerably outdistancing ‘winning the Iraq War’ at No. 23.

15. Impeach Bush — Surprisingly strong; actually No. 3 on the Year-to-Date list.

16. Religious Right — Always a topic on conversation; a far greater base (greater than 30X over the Religious Left, above at No. 6).

17. New Orleans Recovery — A longer, slower dig-out than many assumed. A 60% population drop since Katrina dramatically changes the ethnic composition of the Cresent City.

18. Iran nuclear weapon — Steadily creeping up the list.

19. Culture of Corruption — The Democrat’s new mantra for taking back the House (and the Senate). Desparately hoping that voters don’t look into their closets.

20. Likeability Bush — Core supporters backing stronger than polls suggest; evidently, even the Core can grant the President an unfavorable ranking.

21. Domestic Spying — Showing up twice shows depth of concern (NSA Eavesdropping is No.8).

22. Rumsfield Resign — Nothing new here; In the Top Twenty-five for the third year running.

23. Winning War Iraq — Though seven spots below the ‘losing ’ catchphrase, still a rather strong position on the chart.

24. Climate Change — Surprisingly weak position considering all the publicity.

25. Filibuster Senate — Still a topic of interest.

Others words and phrases being tracked (ranked in descending order) include: Iraq War Insurgency, George Bush and Credibility, China emerging onto the World Stage, concerns about losing the Republican Majority, Global Warming (as opposed to Climate Change), Gasoline Crisis, Bush as a Lame Duck, the Irag War as a Quagmire, ‘out of the mainstream (now losing its power to shock), War for Oil, and Hillary Clintons credibility.

Year-to-Date Rank:
1. Immigration
2. NSA Eavesdrop
3. Impeach Bush
4. DaVinci Code
5. Al-qaeda
6. Religious Right
7. Culture of Corruption
8. Bird Flu
9. Ethanol
10. Iran Nuclear Weapon
11. Domestic Spying
12. Illegal Immagration
13. Losing War Iraq
14. Rumsfield Resign
15. Osama bin-Laden
16. Supreme Court Nomination
17. Climate Change Disaster
18. Winning War Iraq
19. Filibuster Senate
20. New Orleans Recovery
21. Cut Taxes
22. Republican Majority
23. Raise Taxes
24. Iraq War Insurgency
25. George Bush Credibility

Katrina, Bird Flu, Climate Change Top List of Hot Political Buzzwords

List Runs Counter To Virtually Every Pundit’s Playbook

Nota Bene: The Talking Heads do not always reflect the reality of the worldwide media

San Diego, California (November 7, 2005) “Acts of God” top the Global Language Monitors PQ (Political-sensitivity Quotient) Index of the Top Political Buzzwords for the Third Quarter, including four of the Top Five:  Hurricane Katrina, Climate Change, H5N1 Bird Flu, and Global Warming.

To the surprise of many, the Washington Pundits favorites fell uniformly from the Top Political Buzzwords List tracked during the first six months of 2005.  These included:  Supreme Court (down 3 to No. 4), the Iraq Insurgency (down 5 to No. 8), Filibuster (down 7 to No. 15),  Quagmire (down 9 to No. 18) and Out of the Mainstream down 11 to No. 27).  Breaking into the Top 10 were The New York Times Scandal involving Judith Miller debuting at No. 9 and outed Valerie Plame appears on the List at No. 10.

The list runs counter to virtually every pundits playbook,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of GLM.  “Watching the Evening News, one might expect such words as Supreme Court, Insurgency, Filibuster, Quagmire and Out of the Mainstream to dominate the List.  The lesson here might be that the Talking Heads do not always reflect the reality of the worldwide media.  The references to Katrina dwarf anything weve ever tracked, surpassing the record set by the passing of Pope John Paul II, while the horrors of both Climate Change and a looming pandemic weigh heavily on the global mind.”

The Top Politically-sensitive Words for the Third Quarter of 2005:

No. 1:  Hurricane Katrina
Comment:  The long shadow of the 05 Hurricane Season casts a pall over all things political.
Factor: Katrina breaks the all-time PQ Index record for citations previously held by the media coverage of the death of Pope John Paul II.

No. 2:  Climate Change
Comment:  The fact that New York City was under 5,000 feet of ice 10,000 years ago escapes most on both sides of the debate.
Factor:  Up some 300% from the beginning of the year.

No. 3:  H5N1 Bird/Avian Flu
Comment:  A looming global pandemic to dwarf the Bubonic Plague of the Middle Ages  (and AIDS) boggles the contemporary imagination.
Factor:  Up 500% for the year.  Hopefully, this is where it peaks.

No. 4:  Supreme Court
Comment:  Down three spots from No. 1.  Acts of God have a tendency to put the Acts of Man into proper perspective.
Factor:  Up over 800% for the year.

No. 5:  Global Warming
Comment:  Opponents of the Presidents policies prefer global warming to the supposedly more neutral climate change, though the difference is meaningless to those that study language.
Factor:  Up 400 for the year.

No. 6:  European Union (Dead)
Comment:  Though quietly spoken of all year, the French and the Dutch NO votes caused a spike here.
Factor:  Up 70% this month.

No. 7:  John Paul II
Comment:  Still casting a long shadow, longer still in his absence.
Factor:  Up another 20% from the preceding month.

No. 8:  Insurgency
Comment:  Contrary to the Media Pundits and the Polls, insurgency  is down five spots from No. 3.
Factor:  Still rising but overtaken by the natural catastrophes.

No. 9: New York Times Scandal
Comment: The Old Gray Lady takes another in a series of blows on credibility.
Factor:  Up 1300% for the year.

No. 10:  Valerie Plame
Comment:  Though up 80% for the month, Plamegate barely squeaks into the Top 10.
Factor:  Up over 500% for the year.

No. 11:  Judith Miller
Comment:  The prime reason (this month) for deep divisions in the newsroom at the Times .
Factor: Up over 100% for the month.

No. 12:  Cindy Sheehan
Comment:  The impact of the Iraq War Mom is apparently wide but not deep.
Factor: Media coverage up only 200% from her first appearance.

No. 13:  Schaivo
Comment:  She has come to stand for a far greater battle than that between her husband and family.  Factor:  Though down from No. 2, the numbers continue to rise, even after her death.

No. 14:  Credibility (Bush/Cheney)
Comment:  Down nine spots from No. 5; series of missteps in usually disciplined media machine continues.
Factor:  Up 300% in month.

No. 15:  Filibuster
Comment:  Down seven spots from No. 8.  From the Spanish, Filibusteer.
Factor:  With all the talk of the nuclear option, the filibuster ranks among the top political terms few actually understand.

No. 16:  Likeability (Bush)
Comment:  Bush and likeability are still rising modestly despite recent missteps.
Factor:  Up about 30% for the month.

No. 17:  Throes
Comment:  Down ten spots from No. 7, Cheneys Last Throes remark still has legs.
Factor: Up about 200% in the last month.

No. 18:  Quagmire
Comment:  Down nine spots from No. 9.  Actually means quaking mire (and not quaking Miers).
Factor:  Up only 5% for the month but has a large base.

No. 19:  Tsunami
Comment: The Indian Ocean Tsunami will be remembered long after the travails of Helen Miers.
Factor: Still has millions of citations.

No. 20: Persistent Vegetative State
Comment:  You have to wonder if the persistent rise is referring to the state of the Congress.
Factor:  Up some 1600% since the beginning of the year.

Other words being tracked for the index include bubble, Hillary Clinton 2008, and Gravitas.

The PQ Index is a proprietary algorithm that tracks politically sensitive words and phrases in the print and electronic media, on the Internet and the Blogosphere.  The words and phrases are tracked in relation to their frequency, contextual usage and appearance in global media outlets.   GLM publishes the PQ Index on a quarterly basis.

Supreme Court-Related Buzzwords Dominate List of Top Political Buzzwords

Though Cheneys ‘Last Throes’ Bests ‘Quagmire’  as No. 1 on the List

San Diego, California (July 5, 2005) Supreme Court-related buzzwords dominated the list of Top Political Buzzwords released earlier today by the Global Language Monitor.  The Top 15 Included: The Supremes, Activist Judges, the Nuclear Option, Out-of-the Mainstream, and Filibuster, according to GLM’s Political-sensitivity Quotient Index (PQ Index) for the first half of 2005.  “The fact that the Buzzword list was compiled immediately preceding the announcement by Justice OConnor that she would resign her seat on the Court, further strengthens the argument that the impending battle over the first vacancy in 11 years will be a mighty one, indeed,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of GLM.

Vice President Cheneys use of the word throes widely taken to mean the imminent demise of the Iraq Insurgency was the fastest rising political buzzword.  Throes bested No. 2 quagmire, and No. 3 credibility atop GLM’s Political Buzzword List for 2005.  Others in the Index included:  insurgency, European Union (Dead), Schaivo, Supreme Court, activist Judges, and the nuclear option.

The PQ Index is a proprietary algorithm that tracks politically sensitive words and phrases in the media and on the Internet.  The words and phrases are tracked in relation to their frequency, contextual usage and appearance in global media outlets.   GLM publishes the PQ Index on a quarterly basis.

The Top Politically-sensitive Words for the First Half of 2005:

No. 1:  ThroesComment:  Cheneys Last Throes remark appears to fly in the face of the Administration’s tight discipline.Factor: The fastest riser in the Index by far (up nearly 500% in month).

No. 2:  Quagmire Comment:  Actually means quaking mire and as the Insurgency continues, the quagmire cry escalates.
Factor:  Up nearly 1500% for the year.

No. 3:  Credibility (Bush/Cheney)
Comment:  Series of missteps in usually disciplined media machine apparently causing a problem.
Factor:  Up 300% in month.

No. 4:  Insurgency
Comment:  By definition, you dont know the true last throes of a battle until it’s actually over.
Factor:  Up some 300% in the month.

No. 5:  European Union (Dead)
Comment:  Though quietly spoken of all year, the French and the Dutch NO votes caused a spike here.
Factor:  Up 1600% for the year.

No. 6:  Schaivo
Comment:  She has come to stand for a far greater battle than that between her husband and her family.
Factor:  The numbers continue to rise, even after her death.

No. 7:  Supreme Court
Comment:  The stakes are particularly high this year and the numbers show it.
Factor:  Up over 800% for the year.

No. 8:  Likeability (Bush)
Comment:  According to the PQI, Bush and likeability are still rising despite recent problems.
Factor:  Up about 250% as supporters apparently rally round their W.

No. 9:  Incurious
Comment:  Bush seems impervious to the incurious charge though the numbers rise modestly.
Factor:  Charge remains as a low hum in the background.

No. 10:  Activist Judges
Comment:  How come we never here alarming reports about inActivist judges?
Factor:  Up over 900% for the year

No. 11:  Nuclear Option
Comment:  Its been cited in the media over 100,000 times; can someone please explain it to the public?
Factor:   Up 1800% for the year.

No. 12:  John Paul II
Comment:  Still casting a long shadow, longer still in his absence.
Factor:  Up another 200% in the preceding month.

No. 13:  Persistent Vegetative State
Comment:  You have to wonder if the sudden rise in the last month is referring to the state of the Congress.
Factor:  Up 200% in the last month.

No. 14:  Out of the Mainstream
Comment:  There should be a rule:  If 50% of the public supports an issue, pols cant make an  out of the mainstream argument.
Factor:  Up 200% for the month.

No. 15:  Filibuster
Comment:  From the Spanish, Filibusteer.
Factor:  With all the talk of the nuclear option, the filibuster ranks among the top political terms few actually understand.

Other words being tracked for the index include bubble, the Indian Ocean tsunami, and Hillary Clinton. 

Top Political Buzzwords Thus Far:

Surge, Obama, youTube, Cleavage and Pardon signal raucous presidential campaign

Chinglish

 

 

 

 

Will the Beijing Olympics Finally Eradicate Chinglish?

 

  Is this the End to ‘Deformed-man Toilets’ and ‘Racist Parks’

 

  We think not.

Austin, Texas, USA.   July 30, 2008.   MetaNewswire.  There has been much publicity about Beijing’s vaunted attempt to eradicate Chinglish before the 2008 Games begin.  Menus at the top hotels have been replaced with standardized, albeit less poetic, versions (no more ‘exploding shrimp’.)

And many of the city’s traffic signs have been tamed (no more signposts to the Garden with Curled Poo).  “We have worked out 4,624 pieces of standard English translations to substitute the Chinglish ones on signs around the city,” said Lu Jinlan, head of the organizing committee of the Beijing Speaks Foreign Languages Programme (BSFLP).

Is this really the end of Chinglish, that delightful admixture of Chinese and English?

Studies by the Global Language Monitor suggest that Chinglish will persist – and even thrive – far after the Games have ended.

Chinglish is the outgrowth of several convening forces, including:

·    the widespread acceptance of English as a Global Language

·    the fact that some 250 million Chinese are currently studying English as a second, auxiliary or business language

·    he astonishing complexity and richness of the Mandarin language

·    the English language vocabulary is approaching the million word mark

·    The Chinese people evidently enjoy wearing Chinglish on their clothing

Mandarin has more than 50,000 ideograms each of which can be used to represent any number of words.  In addition, Mandarin is a tonal language meaning that tonal variations in pronunciation can distinguish one word from another.  Therefore attempting to map a precise ideogram to any particular word in the million-word English lexicon is a nearly impossible task.

The difficulty is further evidenced on the official Olympic website of the Beijing Olympic Games, http://en.beijing2008.cn, where it states that “we share the charm and joy of the Olympic Games”.  Hundreds of scholars have proofed the site and decided that the word charm is most appropriate in describing the Games.  In past Olympiads words such as ‘power’, ‘pride,’ ‘heroic,’ ‘majesty,’ ‘triumph,’ and, even, ‘tragedy’ frequently have been used to described the Olympic movement but the word ‘charm’ has largely been ignored.   Charm has a number of meanings including the ‘individuating property of quarks and other elementary particles’.  In this case, we assume the authorities were using the definition of charm as a transitive verb:  to attract or please greatly; enchant; allure; fascinate; or delight.

Finally, there is the on-going cross-pollination between English and Mandarin, with Chinglish at the epicenter of the movement.  Recently, the Ministry of Education (MOE) accepted some 171 neologisms into the Chinese language.   Words were considered only after they passed the scrutiny of a dozen scholars associated with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) Institute of Linguistics.  These included a new ideogram for ‘brokeback,’ a word popularized from the banned movie Brokeback Mountain to indicate ‘gay’.

You will find brokeback in few English-language dictionaries, but it already has been accepted into the Chinese.  Words passed over for formal entry, which despite their frequency of use were deemed inappropriate included:  “cool”, “zip it”, 3Q for “thank you” and “kick your ass”.

Recently, the Global Language Monitor listed its all-time favorite Chinglish words and phrases.  These included:

·         Deformed man toilet (handicapped restroom)

·         Airline Pulp (food served aboard airlines – no explanation necessary

·         The slippery are very crafty (slippery when wet)

·         If you are stolen, call the police

·         Do not climb the rocketry (rock wall)

 

Chinglish Adds Flavor to Alphabet Soup

2/19/2008 (China Daily) — San Diego-based consultancy group - Global Language Monitor claims Chinglish is adding the most spice to the alphabet soup of today’s English by contributing more words than any other single source to the global language.

And the more Chinese I learn, the more appetizing this seems.

Subscribing to the Elizabethan definition of a word as “a thing spoken and understood”, GLM is using a predictive quantities indicator (PQI) to scan the Web for emergent English words and track their mainstream use over time.

As GLM president Paul JJ Payack says: “Language colors the way you think. Thinking in Chinese is completely different.”

And every day that I learn more Chinese, the more vibrant this coloration becomes in my mind. This is mostly because of the descriptive nature of the language, in which many words are created by mixing and matching diasylobolic words to create new diasylobolic words.

Generally speaking, English is more definitional, so its words are more terminological than descriptive. For example, a “spider” is a spider - the word in itself tells you nothing about what it represents. But the Chinese word for spider (zhizhu) literally translates as “clever insect” - a description it earns in Chinese by spinning intricate webs to ensnare prey.

In Chinese, you don’t ride a bike, bus or train; you instead respectively ride a (zixinche) “self-walk vehicle”, a (gonggongqiche) “public all-together gas vehicle” or a (huoche) “fire vehicle”.

A massage is a (anmo) “press and touch”. A pimple is a (qingdou) “youth bean”. Investing is to (touzi) “throw funds”. And when you don’t make your money back, the disappointment is conveyed directly as (saoxing) “sweep interest”.

While linguists ballyhoo English’s capacity for specificity, this has in some ways become its weakness, as the definitional often trumps the descriptive, with wonderful exceptions, such as “rainbow”. But that’s where the other widely vaunted strength of the language - its capacity to ravenously gobble up other languages’ words - could become a beautiful thing. And I’m glad to know the English language is developing a growing taste for Chinese food.

In the 1960s, there were about 250 million English speakers, mostly from the United States, the United Kingdom and their former colonies.

Today, the same number of Chinese possesses some command of the language, and that number is growing. One possibility is the plethora of localized “lishes”, such as Chinglish, Hinglish (a Hindi-English hybrid) and Spanglish (an English-Spanish hybrid) could branch so far from English, they become mutually unintelligible tongues sharing a common root, much as Latin did in Medieval Europe.

Many linguists agree that if the lishes splinter, Chinglish will likely become the most prominent offshoot by virtue of sheer numbers, giving Chinese primary ownership of the language.

Perhaps then, English could become more beautiful than I could now describe - at least with its currently existing words. (Contributed by China Daily)

The Million Word March. Fueled by Chinglish?

No Noising’ and ‘Airline Pulp’ named Top Chinglish Words

San Diego, Calif. November 22, 2006. ‘No Noising’ and ‘Airline Pulp’ have been named the Top Chinglish Words of 2006 in The Global Language Monitor’s annual survey of the Chinese-English hybrid words known more commonly as Chinglish. Though often viewed with amusement by the rest of the English-speaking world, The Chinglish phenomenon is one of the prime drivers of Globalization of the English Language.

The Annual Survey by the Global Language Monitor

The importance of Chinglish is the fact that some 250,000,000 Chinese are now studying, or have studied, English and their impact (and imprint) upon the language cannot be denied,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and The WordMan of the Global Language Monitor. “Since each Chinese ideogram can have many meanings and interpretations, translating ideas into English is, indeed, difficult. Nevertheless, the abundance of new words and phrases, unlikely as this may seem, can and will impact Global English as it evolves through the twenty-first century”.

With the English Language marching steadily toward the 1,000,000 word mark, there are now some 1.3 billion speakers with English as their native, second, business or technical tongue. In 1960, the number of English Speakers hovered around 250,000,000 mainly located in the UK and its Commonwealth of former colonies, and the US.

Some scholars maintain that you cannot actually count the number of words in the language because it is impossible to say exactly what a word is, talking rather of memes and other linguistic constructs, are afraid that Global English is just another form of cultural Imperialism. GLM take the classic view of the language as understood in Elisabethan England, where a word was ‘a thing spoken’ or an ‘idea spoken’.

Others say that English is undergoing a rebirth unlike any seen since the time of Shakespeare, when English was emerging as the modern tongue known to us today. (Shakespeare, himself, added about 1700 words to the Codex.) English has emerged as the lingua franca of the planet, the primary communications vehicle of the Internet, high technology, international commerce, entertainment, and the like.

Chinglish is just one of a number of the -Lishes, such as Hinglish (Hindu-English hydrid) and Singlish, that found in Singapore. A language can best be view as a living entity, where it grows just like any other living thing and is shaped by the environment in which it lives. With the continuing emergence of China on the world stage — and with the Olympics coming to Beijing in 2008, the state is now attempting to stamp-out some of the more egregious examples of Chinglish.

In its annual survey the Global Language Monitor has selected from hundreds of nominees, the top Chinglish words and Phrases of 2006.

The Top Chinglish Words and Phrases of 2006 follow:

1. “No Noising”. Translated as “quiet please!”

2. “Airline pulp.” Food served aboard an airliner.

3. “Jumping umbrella”. A hang-glider.

4. “Question Authority”. Information Booth.

5. “Burnt meat biscuit.” No it’s not something to enjoy from the North of England but what is claimed to be bread dipped in a savory meat sauce.

Bonus: GLM’s all-time favorite from previous surveys: “The Slippery are very crafty”. Translation: Slippery when wet!

Independent News (London): Chinglish Phrases on the Rise

People’s Daily (China): Global Language Monitor: Many Chinglish into English

The Sunday Times (London): Chinglish: It’s a word in a million

Click here to add your thoughts to the China Daily Online Translation Community

Chinese Translation Exam Features GLM (Section 7)

Chinglish one of the Top Words of 2005!

Read More.

Click here to Read and Listen to the Chinese Radio Int’l (CRI) Report

OK

Most Recognized Word on the Planet: OK or O.K. or Okay

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U.S. President Martin Van Buren (A.D. 1837–1841) was born in Old Kinderhook, New York. His nickname, Old Kinderhook, was incorporated into his campaign slogan (“Old Kinderhook is O.K.”) and O.K. Democratic Clubs sprung up around the young nation. Van Buren was a founding member of the Democratic Party. (He was overwhelmingly defeated by the Whigs in his re-election attempt in 1840.)

Presaging O.K. Democratic Clubs, was the pronunciation of the phrase ‘oll korrect’ in a bit of humerous wordplay found in the Boston Post newspaper in 1839.

Didn’t you ever wonder why the word consists of two capital letters? OK is now widely heard wherever one sets foot on the planet.

Alternative derivations, since disproven, suggested that OK was from the Greek phrase ola kala for ‘all well’ used in the shipping industry. Another, actually favored by president Woodrow Wilson, was that OK was derived from the Choctaw ‘okeh’.

However, what is sure is that the U.S. Presidential Election of 1840 secured its growing usage and subsequent global expansion during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

Another lesser known catalyst to the word’s present ubiquitous, is the the global dominance of the software of the Microsoft Corporation.  Some 80% of its computer programs that are ‘localized’ into native languages use the English word OK to assert completion or assent.

OK?

 — Paul JJ Payack

See Bushisms

Politically (in)Correct Language

Top Politically (in)Correct Words of 2009

Swine Flu, Flush Toilet, Green Revolution, Minority, and Saint

named top politically (in)Correct words and phrases of 2009

The Sixth Annual Global Survey

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Austin, Texas October 2, 2009 – Swine Flu, Flush Toilet, Green Revolution, Minority, and Saint have been named the top politically (in)Correct words and phrases of the past year according to The Global Language Monitor in its sixth annual survey of the English Language. Rounding out the top ten were the term Politically Correct, Oriental, Founding Fathers, Black Sheep, and Senior Citizen.

“Once again, we are seeing that the attempt to remove all bias from language is itself creating biases of their own,” said Paul JJ Payack, president and chief word analyst of The Global Language Monitor. “At this point it is becoming increasingly difficult to engage in any form of public dialogue without offending someone’s sensitivities, whether right, left or center.”

The Top Politically Correct Words and Phrases for 2009 include:

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1. Swine Flu – Though hundreds of millions know of the current pandemic as Swine Flu, various governments and agencies for political motives ranging from protecting pork producers to religious sensitivity have chosen to address the virus by its formal name, influenza A(H1N1).

2. Flush Toilet – Flush toilets, toilet paper and toilet use in general are now coming under the watchful eyes of the green movement.

3. Green Revolution – In the 1960s the scientific consensus was the world was on the brink of a ‘Malthusian’ collapse. The Green Revolution changed all that, but now there are those who believe that the world has paid a “stiff price in environmental degradation”.

4. Minority – Talking about minorities is considered insensitive to minorities since this can make them feel, well, like minorities.

5. Saint – In addition to the word ‘saint,’ Oxford University Press has removed words such as ‘bishop,’ ‘chapel,’ and ‘Pentecost’ from the Junior Dictionary.

6. Politically Correct – The term politically correct has, itself, is now politically correct, Be careful how you use it.

7. Oriental – In the US considered offensive to Asians because the term is based on the geographic relationship of Asia from a Western perspective. In Europe (and in most Asian nations), however, Oriental is acceptable.

8. Founding Fathers – Though all the Signers of the American Declaration of Independence were men, this is considered sexists in some quarters. Founders, please.

9. Black Sheep – Though originally referring to the rare birth of a lamb with black fur, now considered ethnically insensitive; the same is true for Black Day, Conversely, terms like White Collar and Whiter than White all can be used to encourage a hierarchical value of skin tone.

10. Senior Citizen – In the name of ‘inclusiveness,’ the UK’s Loughborough University’s suggests replacing senior citizen with ‘older person’.

The Top Politically Incorrect Terms and Phrases for previous years include:

  • 2008: “He Can’t Win” – Hillary Clinton’s coded reference to Barack Obama’s ethnic background as an insurmountable impediment to him winning the US Presidency
  • 2007: Nappy-headed Ho — Radio personality Don Imus’ reference to the women on the Rutgers University championship basketball team.
  • 2006: Global Warming Denier – Scientists not denying climate change, but the role of humans in the millennia-old process.
  • 2005: Misguided Criminals – A BBC commentator attempts to strip away all emotion from the word ‘terrorist’ by using ‘neutral’ descriptions for those who carried out the 7/7 tube bombings.
  • 2004: Master/Slave computer jargon – LA County re-labels computer documentation to remove this alleged slur that has been used for decades describing computer hierarchies.

The Global Language Monitor uses a proprietary algorithm, the Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI) to track the frequency of words and phrases in the global print and electronic media, on the Internet, throughout the Blogosphere, as well as accessing proprietary databases. The PQI is a weighted Index, factoring in: long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum, and velocity.

Word Christmas Stronger than Ever in Global Media

Contrary to assumption that “Holiday season” pushing Christmas aside

Austin, TX December 23, 2008 (Update) – The Global Language Monitor (www.LanguageMonitor.com) has found that contrary to the assumption that the word Christmas is being pushed aside by more secular or politically neutral terms, ‘Christmas’ is used over 600% more than ‘Holiday Season’ in the global media. GLM compared the use of Christmas along with that of ‘Holiday Season,’ ‘Xmas,’ Hanukah’ in a variety of spellings, and ‘Kwanzaa’. [Read More.]

Since the 2005 season, Christmas has been used in about 85% of all global print and electronic media citations [2008, 84.6%; 2007, 85.5%; 2006, 84.1%; 2005, 84.1%].

In the global media, Christmas accounted for about 84.6% of all citations with Holiday Season following at 12.6%, followed by Xmas (1.5%), Hanukah (0.9%) and Kwanzaa (0.3%).

On the Internet, Christmas led with 80.8% followed by Xmas (10.6%), Holiday Season (5.1%), Hanukah (2.5%), and Kwanzaa (0.7%).

Notes: The X in the word Xmas actually represents the Greek letter CHI, the first two Letters in the name Christ.

Festivus, the fictional holiday created during the hit Seinfeld television series, and Wintervale, sometimes used as a politically neutral substitute for the Christmas season were also measured with negligible results.

GLM tracked the words and phrases in the print and electronic media, on the Internet and throughout the blogosphere. The analysis also measured the global print and electronic media on its own. The results follow:

Global Media Percentage Internet Percentage
Christmas 84.6% Christmas 80.8%
Xmas 1.5% Xmas 10.6%
Holiday Season 12.6% Holiday Season 5.1%
Hannukah 0.9% Hannukah 2.5%
Kwanzaa 0.3% Kwanzaa 0.7%
Festivus 0.03% Festivus 0.1%
Wintervale 0.00% Wintervale 0.001%
Total 100.0% Total 100.0%

“We thought it would prove interesting to see how the holidays are actually represented in the global media,” said Paul JJ Payack, president and chief word analyst of GLM. “We were a bit surprised to see that the much discussed secularization of Christmas in the media was nowhere as widespread as speculated.”

Top Politically inCorrect Words and Phrases for 2007

‘Nappy-Headed Ho’ Top Politically inCorrect Phrase for 2007 Closely Followed by ‘Ho-Ho-Ho’ and ‘Carbon Footprint Stomping’

Read: Shock jock named king of politically incorrect

Henderson , NV . March 21, 2008. ‘Nappy-headed Ho,’’ closely followed by ‘Ho-Ho-Ho’ and ’Carbon Footprint Stomping’ top the list of the most egregious examples of politically inCorrect language found in 2007 by the Global Language Monitor in its annual global survey. This year’s list includes words and phrases from the US , the UK , Australia , and China .

It is no surprise that a ‘Nappy-headed Ho’ was selected as the Top Politically Incorrect word or phrase for 2007,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of The Global Language Monitor (GLM). “A year later that phrase is still ricocheting about the Internet even affecting Christmas-season Santas in Australia.” The list was nominated by the GLM’s Language Police, volunteer language observers from the world over.
The Top Politically Incorrect Terms and Phrases for previous years include:

  • 2006: Global Warming Denier
  • 2005: Misguided Criminals
  • 2004: Master/Slave computer jargon

The Top Politically inCorrect Words and Phrases for 2007:

1. Nappy-headed Ho’s – Radio personality Don Imus’ reference to the women on the Rutgers University championship basketball team. ‘Nappy’ is ultimately derived from the Anglo Saxon hnoppa for the ‘wooly substance on the surface of cloth’. Combined with the word ‘ho’ — a derogratory term for women, Imus’ comments led to an uproar in the media and ultimately led to his resignation.
2. HoHoHo — Staffing company in Sydney suggesting to prospective Santas to re-phrase their traditional greeting of “ho, ho, ho” in favor of “ha, ha, ha” so as not be confused with American urban parlance, a derogatory term for women.
3. Carbon footprint stomping – The movement to flaunt carbon-intensive activities such as driving Hummers and flying private jets; a reaction to the Green movement is the height of political inCorrectness.
4. Year of the Pig Restrictions – Chinese State Television in Shanghai warns Nestle against Happy Pig New Year ads, foregoing thousands of years of Chinese Tradition, because it might inflame pork-shying minorities.
5. Three Little Pigs – according to the BBC, A retelling of the three little pigs fairy tale, called Three Little Cowboy Builders, was excluded from award consideration because judges said that “ the use of pigs raises cultural issues”. It was also found to “alienate parts of the workforce (building trade): “Is it true that all builders are cowboys, builders get their work blown down, and builders are like pigs?”
6. The ‘Race’ Card – Originally a printed card with information about a thoroughbred horse race, now used in 2008 Presidential campaign parlance as in ‘playing the race card’, meaning intentionally injecting issues of ethnicity into the campaign. The word ‘race’ is ultimately derived from the Old High German for lineage.
7. “Obesity Is Socially Contagious” — That was the widely reported headline in the UCSD press release announcing the results of a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine that actually came to the opposite conclusion. One of the study’s authors made it worse by stating “It’s spread from person to person like a fashion or a germ … once it starts; it’s hard to stop it. It can spread like wildfire.”
8. Fire-breathing Dragon – Lindsey Gardiner, a leading British children’s author of the popular Lola, Poppy and Max characters, was instructed to eliminate a fire-breathing dragon from her new book because publishers feared they could be sued under health and safety regulations.
9. “Wucha dun did now?” — Handbook distributed a Houston school district police officer to enable the reader to speak “as if you just came out of the hood”.
10. Gypsy skirt – The worldwide phenomenon of the gypsy, tiered or Boho skirt has a new name: Traveler’s Skirt, since police in Cornwall believed that the term ‘Gypsy Skirt’ might be considered offensive to this cultural minority.
The Global Language Monitor uses a proprietary algorithm, the Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI) to track the frequency of words and phrases in the global print and electronic media, on the Internet, throughout the Blogosphere, as well as accessing proprietary databases. The PQI is a weighted Index, factoring in: long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum, and velocity.
GLM is moving its headquarters to Austin , Texas in the coming months.

The Top Politically inCorrect Words for 2006

Macaca, Global Warming Denier, Herstory and Flip Chart Top Annual List

San Diego, California (December 13, 2006) Macaca, Global Warming Denier, Herstory and Flip Chart top the list of the most egregious examples of politically correct language found in 2006 by the Global Language Monitor (www.LanguageMonitor.com) in its annual global survey.

In 2006, the Political Correctness movement continued to gain momentum to the effect that many were unaware of the extent that it had inserted itself into ordinary English-language conversations,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor (GLM). The year has been rife with examples that have been nominated by the GLM’s Language Police, volunteer language observers from the world over”.

The Top Politically inCorrect Words and Phrases for 2006:

1. Macaca – Might have changed the political balance of the US Senate, since George Allen’s (R-VA) utterance (which is an offensive slang term for Indians of the Sub-continent in the West Indies) surely has impacted his election bid.

2. Global Warming Denier – Since there are those who now believe that climate changed has moved from scientific theory to dogma; there are now proposal that ‘global warming deniers’ be treated the same as ‘holocaust deniers:’ professional ostracism, belittlement, ridicule and, even, jail.

3. Herstory for History – ‘Herstory’ again attempts to take the male element out of ‘HIS story’. Though there are nearly 900,000 Google citations for ‘HERstory, they are all based on a mistaken assumption. When Herodotus wrote the first history, the word meant simply an ‘inquiry’.

4. Flip Chart. The term can be offensive to Filipinos, please use ‘writing block’.

5. 1a and 1b — The headmistress of a grade school in Midlothian (Scotland) had to split a grade into two equal classes. Though the split was purely alphabetical, parents objects because those with children in ‘1b’ feared they may be perceived as academically inferior to those in ‘1a’.

6. Politically Incorrect Colors — Staff at a coffee shop in Glasgow refused to serve a customer who had ordered a ‘black coffee’, believing it to be ‘racist.’ He wasn’t served until he changed his order to ‘coffee without milk’. Around the world we have reports of the word ‘black’ becoming emotionally charged and politically correct or incorrect depending upon one’s point of view.

7. Oriental – Asian, please. Though this is generally a purely American phenomenon. In Europe, Asians prefer the term Oriental, which literally means ‘those from the East’.

8. Menaissance – The rise of a ‘manliness’ culture or male renaissance. Replaces metrosexual, which evidently appealed to women but not men.

9. Momtini — A Michigan mother invented the term ‘momtini’ as an act of rebellion against ‘parental correctness’. This has raised the hackles of child protection and ‘anti-alcohol’ groups.

10. “Our Mother and Father Who are in Heaven” – From a new, ‘inclusive’ Bible translation (The Bible in a More Just Language) that replaces what it believes to be “divisive” teachings of Christianity.

Bonus: Political Correctness — ‘Equality Essentials,’ a 44-page training manual book called has been used for staff training courses at Kirklees Council in West Yorkshire suggests that the term Political Correctness is now politically incorrect.

Top Words for 2005 and 2004

The Top Politically Incorrect Words for 2005 were the BBC’s use of the euphemism ‘Misguided Criminals’ for Terrorists after the 7/7 Tube Bombings.

In 2004, the List was highlighted by Los Angeles County’s insistence of covering over with labels any computer networking protocols that mention master/slave jargon.

Top Politically (in)Correct Words for 2005

Misguided Criminals, Intrinsic appitude, and Thought Shower Top List

Top Politically (in)Correct Words
San Diego, California (Updated November 29, 2005) Misguided Criminals, Intrinsic Aptitude, and Thought Shower top the list of the most egregious examples of politically correct language found in 2005 by the Global Language Monitor in its annual global survey. This year’s list includes words from the US, UK, France and Australia.


“2005 was the year we saw the Political Correctness movement become a truly global phenomenon,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The GlobalLanguage Monitor (GLM). “The list is but one more example of the insertion of politics into every facet of modern life.”

The year has been rife with examples that have been nominated by the GLM’s Language Police, volunteer language observers from the world over.

Click here to Watch WCCO’s Video (Minneapolis)

Click here to Read and Listen to the Chinese Radio Int’l (CRI) Report

The Top Politically inCorrect Words and Phrases for 2005:

1. Misguided Criminals for Terrorist: The BBC attempts to strip away all emotion by using what it considers neutral descriptions when describing those who carried out the bombings in the London Tubes. The rub: the professed intent of these misguided criminals was to kill, without warning, as many innocents as possible (which is the common definition for the term, terrorist). The phrase was selected by GLM as but one example in line with the published BBC Editorial Guidelines where it is noted that the word ‘terrorist’ itself can be a barrier rather than aid to understanding. Suggested alternatives include: bomber, attacker, insurgent and militant, among others. These and similar words are deemed to have no emotional or value judgments. However, the word Terrorist can be used as long as it appears in a quoted attribution. [To see one example used by John Simpson, BBC World Affairs Editor, Click Here.]

2. Intrinsic Aptitude (or lack thereof) was a suggestion by LawrenceSummers, the president of Harvard, on why women might be underrepresented in engineering and science. He was nearly fired for his speculation.

3. Thought Shower or Word Shower substituting for brainstorm so as not to offend those with brain disorders such as epilepsy.

4. Scum or “la racaille” for French citizens of Moslem and North African descent inhabiting the projects ringing FrenchCities. France’s Interior Minister, Nicolas Sarkozy, used this most Politically inCorrect (and reprehensible) label to describe the young rioters (and by extension all the inhabitants of the Cites).

5. Out of the Mainstream when used to describe theideology of any political opponent: At one time slavery was in the mainstream, thinking the sun orbited the earth was in the mainstream, having your blood sucked out by leeches was in the mainstream. What’s so great about being in the mainstream?

6. Deferred Success as a euphemism for the word fail. The Professional Association of Teachers in the UK considered a proposal to replace any notion of failure withdeferred success in order to bolster students self-esteem.

7. Womyn for Women to distance the word from man. This in spite of the fact that the term man in the original Indo-European is gender neutral (as have been its successors for some 5,000 years).

8. C.E. for A.D.: Is the current year A.D. 2005 or 2005 C.E.? There is a movement to strip A.D.(Latin for “In the Year of the Lord”) from the year designation used in the West since the 5th century and replace it with the supposedly moreneutral Common Era (though the zero reference year for the beginning of the Common Era remains the year of Christ’s birth).

9. “God Rest Ye Merry Persons” for “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen”: A Christmas, eh, Holiday, carol with 500 years of history isnot enough to sway the Anglican Church at Cardiff Cathedral (Wales) from changing the original lyrics. There are those who suggest going one step further: “Higher Power Rest Ye Merry Persons”.

10. Banning the word Mate: the Department ofParliamentary Services in Canberra issued a general warning to its security staff banning the use of the word ‘mate’ in dealings t with both members of Parliament and the public. What next? banning ‘no worries’ so as not to offend the worried, or banning ‘Down Under’ So as not to offend those of us who live in the “Up Over”.

HolidayBonus: Happy Holidays or Season’s Greetings for Christmas (which in some UK schools now label Wintervale). However, the word holiday is derived directly from Holy Day, and in the word X-Mas, the Greek letter ‘chi’ represented by the Roman X actually stands for the first two letters of the name Christ.) Now there are published reports of organization banning the traditional Christmas Colours of red and green.

Last year the Top Politically Incorrect words were: Los Angeles Countys insistence of covering over with labels any computer networking protocols that mention master/slave jargon. Following closelywere same-sex marriage for marriage and waitron for waiter of waitress.

Australia bans the word ‘mate’

GLM’S Language Police suggest these others: ‘No Worries’, ‘Down Under’, ‘Barbie’, etc.

San Diego, Calif. August 24, 2005. Last week, the Department of Parliamentary Services in Canberra, issued a general warning to its security staff banning the use of the word ‘mate’ in any dealings they might have with both members of the Parliament and the public. Almost immediately, Australian Prime Minister John Howard called the ban “absurd” while the Opposition labeled it “un-Australian”. The ban has since been rescinded.

In direct response, the Global Language Monitor polled its readers (and enquired of its Language Police) to come up with further suggestions of slang words and informal language that might serve the public interest by being banned in Australia. Earlier today, as a service to the international linguistic ‘mateship’ or community, GLM released its List.

We believe that if the Department of Parliamentary Services had a list of “Further Slang terms and Colloquialisms fit to be Avoided, Shunned, or Otherwise Banned,” these are the words that would populate such a List,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and the WordMan for the Global Language Monitor. “To make the List, words had to be innocuous in themselves, but in the context of Political Correctness, potentially offensive to some segment of the populace”.

Recently, the BBC’s use of the term ‘misguided criminals’ and ‘bombers’ when referring to the perpetrators of the recent London blasts stirred an international debate on politically correct language. The BBC used those words to replace the term ‘terrorist’, which according to the BBC can “carry emotional or value judgments”.

GLM’s List is an ongoing compilation; currently the list of words to be potentially banned with associated commentary follows:

Barbeque — The shortened form, barbie, can be an invidious reference to the Barbie doll, and hence sexist.

Abso-bloody-lutely — Though the term bloody can signify an intensive, this use could also heighten insensitivity to the plight of farm animals that animal rights activists have long warned against.

Down Under — Down Under signifies the existence of an Up Over, which obviously is in the superior position of Uppness. Might be taken as ignoring the very real consequences of the North/South global divisions.

G’day — G’day is the shortened form of ‘Good Day’. Some etymologists believe that good can be ultimately traced to an earlier word for God. Hence, G’day could represent a conspiracy to insinuate the theistic world view into everyday life.

Mate — From classmates at male boarding schools. Obviously sexist, also elitist.

Nappy — Diaper, might offend those who illegally download music to their hard drives, and narcoleptics.

No Worries — This is offensive to those with OCD, and others who are plagued by constant self-doubt and apprehension.

Plonk — Inexpensive wine (in the US it’s called ripple). Plonk is perhaps a contraction of vin blanc; this might offend francophones.

Ta — Thank you. In the spirit International Harmony, the French s’il vous plait is preferred.

Vegemite — A plot to foist upon a defenseless world, the supposed utopian ideal of what a meatless sandwich might be.

Zed — The letter Z. Not exactly slang, but a candidate for banishment nonetheless on general principles.

Nought — the number ‘zero’. If this caught on, the English-speaking world might finally have a name for the first decade of the 21st century: the Noughties.

To contribute to the List, CLICK HERE.

To Read the Story from the Aussie perspective, CLICK HERE.

Terrorist’ Or ‘Bomber’?

BBC Stirs Debate on Political Correctness

Filtering Events of All Emotional Content?

San Diego, California (July 15, 2005) The BBC’s use of the term ‘misguided criminals’ and ‘bombers’ when referring to the perpetrators of the recent London blasts have stirred an international debate on politically correct language. The words replace the term terrorist, which according to the BBC can “carry emotional or value judgments”.

According to the Global Language Monitor’s exclusive PQ (Political-sensitivity Quotient) Index, the term ‘terrorist’ appears 700% more frequently on the web than ‘bomber’ when linked to terror-related activities such as suicide bombings, and the like. When tracking global news articles only, the word ‘bomber’ can be found in about 40% of the articles, though usually in combination with ‘terrorist’ or ‘terrorist-related’ words. The phrase ‘misguided criminals’ is found only about 5000 times on the entire web, many times linked to the emerging BBC story.

BBC guidelines state that credibility should never be undermined by the “careless use of words which (sic) carry emotional or value judgments”.

The primary function of a news organization is to detail events as they occur in their existing cultural milieu, thereby recording the first draft of history. The BBC seems concerned with overstepping this boundary into what was once called yellow journalism. The greater danger here is to filter emotion-laden events of all emotional content in their pursuit of the non-judgmental,” said Paul JJ Payack, President (and the WordMan) of the Global Language Monitor.

The PQ Index is a proprietary algorithm that tracks politically sensitive words and phrases in the print. The words and phrases are tracked in relation to their frequency, contextual usage and appearance in global media outlets, thereby separating the spin and the hype from the facts. The PQ Index is published quarterly.

Political Correctness Advocates Rail Against Western Calendar

A.D. 2005 or 2005 C.E.?

The Traditional Western Practice is to Reckon Time from the Birth of Jesus

San Diego, Calif. May 16, 2005. MetaNewswire. A small but vocal element is voicing opposition to the traditional Western practice of dividing time, measuring events as occurring before or after the birth of Jesus or B.C and A.D., according to a survey by The Global Language Monitor (GLM), using the Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI).

The survey found that in the worldwide electronic and print media, and on the Internet, the current convention of A.D. and B.C. was found to be nearly 50 times as prevalent as that of the C.E. and B.C.E. convention. Nevertheless, the fact that the newer conventions were now found to be used at all indicates significant inroads, where until recently none existed.

The C.E. and B.C.E. conventions were introduced about a century ago in the Jewish and Scientific communities, but have been adopted increasingly by those who want to place some distance or obscure the Judeo-Christian roots of Western Civilization. The issue has become increasingly polarizing on college campuses, school textbook publishers, and in the various religious communities.

The Western Calendar is especially pervasive because all major electronic and computer systems have it deeply embedded in their basic instruction sets, or operating systems. This means that all electronic commerce, commercial applications, scientific, airlines, electronic games, automobiles, clocks, etc. are based on the Western Calendar.

As with most language-based PC issues, the battle is intense, however, no authority or group can mandate linguistic change, said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor. “The fact is that both C.E. or A.D. both acknowledge the centrality of Jesus to the Western Calendar, (actually shorthand for Western Christendom), since both A.D. and C.E. both refer to the birth of Jesus as the time marker for the West.”

(In the aftermath of the French Revolution, the revolutionaries made anill-fated and short-lived attempt to restart the Western Calendar, which was to begin on September 22, 1792: the day of the declaration of the first French Republic. Months were cited by Roman numerals and named after meteorological conditions.)

Payack added, “Jesus, of course, was born in 749 AUC (ab urbe condita) from the founding of the City), since the Roman Calendar was dated from the mythical founding of the City by Romulus in 753 B.C. It is also interesting to note that when Dominus Exiguus, the 5th Century monk, created the current Calendar, he miscalculated, which is why it is now generally accepted that Jesus was born in the year 4 B.C, that is four years before the year of his birth.”

There are several major calendar systems in addition to the Western system currently in use. These include the Hebrew, Islamic, Buddhist, and Chinese.

The Hebrew Calendar dates from the Creation (current year 5765); the Islamic Calendar dates from the Hegira (current year 1425); the Chinese Calendar dates from the Emperor Huangdi, in 2637 B.C.; and the Buddhist Calendar dates from the birth of the Buddha, 543 years B.C., making 2005 the year 2548 of the Buddhist Era.

The Predictive Quantities Indicator is a proprietary algorithm that tracks specified words and phrases in the media and on the Internet. The words and phrases are tracked in relation to their frequency, contextual usage and appearance in global media outlets. In this case, the words tracked were Anno Domini (A.D., literally Year of the Lord), Before Christ (B.C.), the Common Era (C.E.) and Before the Common Era (B.C.E.)

Politically inCorrect PCs

Top Politically Correct Word List of 2004

Master/Slave Tech Terms Raise Eyebrows in L.A.

Danville, California (December 4, 2004) Los Angeles County’s insistence on covering over with labels any computer networking protocols that mention master/slave jargon, has been chosen the top example of political correctness in language for 2004 .

We found Master/Slave to be but the most egregious example of political correctness in 2004,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor. “This is but one more example of the insertion of politics into every facet of modern life, down to the level of the control processes of computer technology.”

In computer networking terminology, master/slave is commonly used to describe a device or process that has captured (and involuntarily) controls one or more devices or processes. The year has been rife with examples that have been nominated by the GLMs Language Police, volunteer language observers from the world over.

The Top Politically Correct Words and Phrases for 2004:

1. Device for master and captured device for slave in computer networking terminology

2. Non-same sex marriage, for marriage used in Democratic Presidential Primaries

3. Waitron for waiter or waitress

4. Red Sox Lover for Yankee Hater during the ALCS playoffs

5. Higher Power for God

6. Progressive for classical liberal

7. Incurious rather than more impolite invectives for President Bush (such as idiot or moron)

8. Insurgents substituting for terrorists in Iraq

9. Baristas rather than waitrons

10. First year student rather than Freshman, though Frosh is still acceptable

Top Politically Correct Words (Russia)

Master/Slave in the Times of Oman

Master/Slave is the Most Offensive Term (India)

The View from The Ukraine

Computer Term Named the Most un-PC (South Africa)

The View from China

TechTarget’s Dictionary of Computer Terms

The View on the Controversy From Down Under

Master/Slave Most Politicially Incorrect Phrase (ABC News)

Stats

Number of Living Languages:  6,912

Number of Words in the English Language:  998,773

Number of words in various langauges

Chinese (various dialects): 500,000 +

French: 100,000

German: 185,000

Russian: 195,000

Spanish: 225,000 +

Japanese: 232,000

Hindi: 120,000

Arabic: 45,000 (though used in many more variations)

Toki Pona:  197

Top Languages on the Internet

1 to 10 in 1,000 Languages

Number of Living Languages by Country

Top Spoken Languages in the World

Average American Vocabulary:  14,000 words
(Consensus Estimate.)

Shakespeare’s Vocabulary:  24,000 words+
(Various concordances.)

Number of Words Invented by Shakespeare:  1,700+
(Various concordances.)

Words in the King James Bible:

  • 12,143 individual words in the English,
  • 783,137 total words,
  • 8,674 individual words in the Hebrew Old Testament
  • 5,624 individual words in the Greek New Testament

Number of words (neologisms) invented by Shakespeare: 1,700+

Number of words invented by Thomas Jefferson: 150

Number of words invented by President Bush: 25+

Useful Language Links:

TV

Top Television Buzzwords of 2008

Beijing tops ObamaSpeak as the Top Teleword of the Year followed byfacts are stubborn things’, ‘it is what it is,’ and Phelpsian.  

 

The Global Language Monitor’s Fifth Annual Analysis

 

Austin, Texas, USA.   September 24, 2008. The Global Language Monitor (www.LanguageMonitor.com) today announced the top words impacting Global English for the recently ended 2008 television season.  The Top Teleword was Beijing as in Beijing Olympics, an appropriate honor for the most watched television program of all time followed by ObamaSpeak, John Adams’ phrase ‘facts are stubborn things’, the ubiquitous  it is what it is,’ and Phelpsian.  Rounding out the Top Ten were Third Screen, Vincible, Lip Synching, Lipstick (as ‘in on a pig’), and IPTV. 

“As always, words stemming from Television’s three screens, impacted Global English in interesting, innovative, and always fascinating ways,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of GLM. “This year, two events dominated television, the Beijing Olympics and the US Presidential Elections”

The Top Telewords of the 2008 season with commentary follow:

1.     Beijing: The Beijing Olympics were the most-watched television show of all time with some 4.7 billion global viewers. 

2.     ObamaSpeak:  Words coined to describe the Obama Barack phenomenon, including obamamentum, obamabot, obamacize, obamarama, and obamaNation.

3.     “It is, what it is”:  Everywhere on the tube this year from “The Wire” to the Roger Clemons Steroid in Baseball Congressional hearings.

4.      “Facts are stubborn things”:  John Adams’ quaint turn of phrase for ‘it is what it is’.  The John Adams biopic won the most Emmys ever for a single program.

5.     Phelpsian:  New word coined to describe the Phelpsian Pheat of winning eight golds in a single Olympics.

6.     Third Screen:  Watching Television on your TV (first screen), your computer (second screen), and now your mobile device, the third screen.

7.     Vincible:  The invincible New England Patriots prove vincible after all, with a shocking upset by the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLII.

8.     Lip Synching:  The fate of Lin Miaoke, the little girl who didn’t sing the song the whole world sings in the Olympics opening ceremony.

9.     Lipstick:  On a pig or otherwise, a media sensation this year for a supposed characterization of Republican VP aspirant Sarah Pallin.

10.  IPTV:  Internet protocol-based television, the wave of the future.

 

The Top Telewords of previous years were:

2007:  “Surge” from the Iraq War political and military strategy, “That’s Hot®” Paris Hilton’s popular expression that is now a registered trademark, and “D’oh!” from The Simpsons and The Simpsons Movie.

2006:   ‘Truthiness’ and ‘Wikiality’ from  the Colbert Show followed by ‘Katrina’, ‘Katie,’ and ‘Dr. McDreamy’.

2005:  ‘Refugee’ from the coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, followed by ‘Desperation’ from Desperate Housewives and ‘Camp Cupcake’ from the on-going Martha Stewart follies.

2004:  “You’re Fired!” edged “Mess O’ Potamia” followed by “Girlie Men,” “God,” and “Wardrobe Malfunction”.

 

Top Television Buzzwords of 2007

 

“Surge,” “That’s Hot” “D’oh!” & “Blackout”

Top Television Buzzwords Impacting English Language

 

 

 

In ‘06, ‘Truthiness’ and ‘Wikiality’ were named Top Television Buzzwords followed by ‘Katrina’, ‘Katie,’ and ‘Dr. McDreamy’

 

San Diego. September 16, 2007. The Global Language Monitor (www.LanguageMonitor.com) named “Surge” from the Iraq War political and military strategy, “That’s Hot®” Paris Hilton’s popular expression that is now a registered trademark, “D’oh!” from The Simpsons and The Simpsons Movie, and “Blackout” from the Sopranos series finale as the top television buzzwords impacting Global English for the 2007 Season. Closely following are “YaTTA!” from Heroes and “McEmmys” from Grey’s Anatomy. Rounding out the Top Ten are “I like to have the answers before I ask the questions” from The Closer, “No miniskirts after 35!” from What Not to Wear, “Scranton” from The Office, “Oy vey!” from Criminal Minds, and “Peek, Copy and Save” from Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?

This year’s annual list capture’s the spirit of the times, for better or for worse. Themes, stars and shows may change at an every quickening pace, but this only reflects the world in which we live, more than we’d ever like to admit”, said Paul JJ Payack, president and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor. Payack also mentioned that the word surge is a very strong contender for overall Word of the Year to be announced by the Global Language Monitor in December.

The Television Buzzwords are nominated by GLM’s Language Police, volunteer language observers scattered the world over. The words are then run through the Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI}, the proprietary algorithm that analyzes the global print and electronic media, the Internet, and blogosphere and then ranks the words according to year-over-year change, acceleration and directional momentum.

The Top TeleWORDS are released in conjunction with 59th Primetime Emmy Awards, broadcast on the Fox Television Network on Sunday, September 16, from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles.

Top TellyWORDS for Impact Upon the English Language in 2007 with commentary follows.

1. Surge (Iraq War) ­ – A military and political strategy, on the lips of every politician.

 

2. “That’s Hot®!” (Paris Hilton) – Hilton owns the trademark to the phrase “That’s hot,” which was registered on Feb. 13th. What’s next? Britney trademarking ‘public breakdown’.

 

3. D’oh (The Simpsons) – As in dough, as the Simpsons’ leap to the silver screen grosses $485 million and counting.

 

4. Blackout (The Sopranos) – The series-ending episode redefined the word ‘cliffhanger’ since there was no ‘hanging’ about the cliff in any way, shape or form, rather a sharp plunge into the abyss.

5. YaTTA! (Heroes) – YaTTA! narrowly beats out “WTF, is going to happen now?”

 

6. he McEmmys (Grey’s Anatomy Actors and Alumni) – Grey’s Anatomy cast and alumni (AKA McDreamy & Crew) have a host of prime-time nominations

 

7. “ I like to have the answers before I ask questions.” (The Closer) – Kyra Sedgwick’s trademark ‘sassiness’ on display.

 

8. “No miniskirts after 35.” (What Not to Wear) – … nor white shoes after Labor Day. Stacy London and Clinton Kelly dissect fashion victims (and what led them to their present dire circumstance).

 

9. Scranton, or is it Wilkes-Barre? (The Office) – The extended mockumentary located in this gritty Northeast Pennsylvania city.

 

10. Oy Vey! Criminal Minds – Mandy Patinkin deserts the set, yet again.

 

Bonus Words: Peek, Copy and Save (Are you smarter than a Fifth Grader?) – Solid advice for anyone, in most circumstances, especially after 5th grade.

 

Top Words for 2006, 2005 and 2004

In 2006, ‘Truthiness’ and ‘Wikiality’ were named Top Television Buzzwords followed by ‘Katrina’, ‘Katie,’ and ‘Dr. McDreamy’.

In 2005, ‘Refugee’ from the on-going coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina topped ‘Desperation’ from Desperate Housewives and ‘Camp Cupcake’ from the on-going Martha Stewart follies.

In 2004, “You’re Fired!” edged “Mess O’ Potamia” followed by “Girlie Men,” “God,” and “Wardrobe Malfunction”.

2006

Truthiness’ and ‘Wikiality’ named Top Television Buzzwords of 2006 Followed by ‘Katrina’, ‘Katie,’ and ‘Dr. McDreamy’

The Annual Survey by the Global Language Monitor

Released in Conjunction With the Prime Time Emmy Awards

San Diego, Calif. August 27, 2006. ‘Truthiness’ from the multi-Emmy nominated ‘Colbert Report’ was named the Top TeleWORD of the year in The Global Language Monitor’s (HTTP://www.LanguageMonitor.com) annual survey of words from television that profoundly influenced the English Language. In an unprecedented move, ‘Wikiality,’ also from the Colbert Report was named No. 2. Closely following were ‘Katrina’ referring to the on-going stories about the hurricane’s devestating destruction, ‘Katie’ in regard to Katie Couric’s move into the top seat at CBS News, and ‘Dr. McDreamy’ from the break-out drama, ‘Grey’s Anatomy’.

Rounding out the Top Ten were ‘Bush’s War,’ heard often on the News, ‘Man of the Hours,’ citing ‘24’s’ Keifer Sutherland, ‘Tourette’s,’ from ‘I have Tourette’s but Tourette’s doesn’t have me,’ ‘Dysfunctional’ from ‘The Office,’ and ‘Falling Starr,’ referring to the ‘View’s’ embattled Starr Jones.

This year’s Bonus Phrase is ‘You’re going to Hollywood!’ from Simon Cowell’s wunderkind ‘American Idol’.

Television, once again, has helped to define our culture and its impact upon spoken English is profound,“ said Paul JJ Payack, President of the Global Language Monitor. “Some of these buzzwords will quickly pass, while others will be embedded in the language for years to come.” “Though ‘truthiness’ in some form has existed in the language for centuries, it could not have been revived in more relevant times than the early 21st century; while ‘wikiality’ can be observed even today, where Pluto has been voted out of the Solar System by a convention of Astronomers,” Payack concluded.

The San Diego-based media metrics and analysis company, The 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.

The Top TeleWORDS are released in conjunction with the 58th Primetime Emmy Awards ceremony, to be broadcast from Los Angeles on Sunday, August 28th, at 8:00 pm Eastern on the NBC Television Network.

The Top TeleWORDS for the 2005 - 2006 Television season with commentary, follow:

1. Truthiness — (Colbert Report) Truth unemcumbered by the facts.

2. Wikiality — (Colbert Report) Reality as determined by majority vote. See Pluto, the former planet. First time ever with two words from the same show.

3. Katrina — (The News) First hit of the 2005-‘06 season; unfortunately a direct hit on New Orleans.

4. Katie — (CBS Evening News) Did we ever refer to Walter Crondkite as Wally or Dan Rather as Dannie? Will Katie help us redefine the term, gravitas?

5. Dr. McDreamy — (Grey’s Anatomy) Patrick Dempsey follows in a long line of television ‘dream-boat’ physicians dating back to ‘Dr. Kildare’.

6. Bush’s War — (Heard often on the News) Echoing the label bestowed upon Mr. Lincoln (Mr. Lincoln’s War) two centuries past. After his assassination and the end of what we now know as the Civil War, Lincoln rose steadily in stature.

7. Man of the hours — (24) Keifer Sutherland finally gets the nod.

8. Tourette’s — (I have Tourette’s but Tourette’s doesn’t have me) Replaces Tony Sholub’s OCD as the lesser known disease going mainstream this season.

9. Dysfunctional — (The Office) The office as family, dysfunctional family that is.

10. Falling Starr — (The View) Starr Jones that is, in her battle with BaBa Walters.

Bonus Phrase: ‘You’re going to Hollywood!’ — (American Idol) Simon Cowell’s wunderkind might actually win an Emmy this time around.

Last year: ‘Refugee’ from the on-going coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina topped ‘Desperation’ from Desperate Housewives and ‘Camp Cupcake’ from the on-going Martha Stewart follies.

The previous year “You’re Fired!” edged “Mess O’ Potamia” followed by “Girlie Men,” “God,” and “Wardrobe Malfunction”.

About the Global Language Monitor

San Diego, California-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. A worldwide assemblage of language professionals, teachers, wordsmiths and bibliophiles, supports the GLM to help monitor the latest trends in the evolution (and demise) of language, word usage and word choices. For more information, call 1.925.367.7557, send email to info@LanguageMonitor.com, or visit www.LanguageMonitor.com.

Refugee’ Tops ‘Desperation’ and ‘Camp Cupcake’ as Top Television Buzzword of the 2005

Year of Desperate Images Reflecting Harshness of Real Life Dominate TeleWORDS List

San Diego, California. October 13, 2005. ‘Refugee’ from the on-going coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina tops ‘Desperation’ from Desperate Housewives and ‘Camp Cupcake’ from the on-going Martha Stewart follies as the Top Television Buzzword (TeleWORD) for the 2004-05 season, according to the Global Language Monitor, the media tracking and analysis company. Close behind were ‘Reality TV’ from The Real World, etc., and ‘Curmudgeon’ from House. Rounding out the Top Ten were “Its what we do” from Stargate SG-1, ‘Flip Flop’ from the 2004 U.S. Presidential Elections, ‘Backstory’ from Lost, ‘Tsunami’ from the South Asian earthquake, and ‘mobisodes’ or one minute episodes for mobile devices.

Words no longer Hip include Youre fired from The Apprentice and Mess O Potamia from The Daily Show. Words With Legs include “Yadda, yadda, yadda! from Seinfeld.

This years list was dominated by reality far outstripping reality programming bringing a world of woes into the global living room,” said Paul JJ Payack, president of The Global Language Monitor. “While desperation from Desperate Housewives began the television year in good fun, as the season progressed the world witnessed an on-going war, a tsunami, the death of a beloved Pope, and finally unanswered death and despair on the American Gulf Coast. Finally, the meaning of the word refugee has actually been altered by real-world horrors witnessed by hundreds of millions on live TV.”

The TeleWORDS List reflects those words and phrases that came to prominence during the 2004-05 television season or have had the greatest influence on the English Language. Words are nominated by a global panel of language experts and then analyzed by GLMs proprietary algorithm, the Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI).

The Television Buzzword List (TeleWORDS) for the 2004-05 Season is released in conjunction with the 57th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, to be televised live on CBS on Sunday, September 18th from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. The complete list, with commentary, follows.

The Top TeleWORDS of the 2004-05 Television Season

TeleWORDS / Show / Comment

1. Refugee
Show: Ongoing coverage of the aftermath of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina.
Comment: For millions, the word has now taken on a racial undertone and was subsequently replaced by evacuee and others.
Runners-up: Evacuee, displaced persons, Katrinees?

2. Desperation
Show: Desperate Housewives/The Tsunami/Hurricane Katrina
Comment: Desperate Housewives began the television year in good fun, but as the year progressed the world witnessed an on-going war, a tsunami, the death of a beloved Pope, and finally unanswered death and despair on the American Gulf Coast.

3. Camp Cupcake
Show: The On-going Martha Stewart follies
Comment: The minimum security WV facility where Martha did her time.
Runner -Up: Ankle Bracelet

4. Reality TV
Show: The Real World, The Bachelor, Survivor Classic, The Simple Life, etc.
Comment: Real-world reality bested the manufactured kind by a long shot this television season.

5. Curmudgeon
Show: House
Comment: Acerbic, caustic, antisocial, & mean-spirited; those are socially redeeming qualities of this brilliant physician.

6. “Its what we do.”
Show: Stargate SG-1
Comment: Stargate becomes the longest running Sci-Fi Series in the history of the medium.

7. Flip Flop
Show: The 2004 U.S. Presidential Elections
Comment: Formerly referred to gymnastic routines, pancakes, and dolphin acts; now transcends politics moving into pop culture.

8. Backstory
Show: Lost
Comment: Lost takes the story behind the story concept to the next level.

9. Tsunami
Show: The News
Comment: Before “The Tsunami” took a quarter of a million South Asian lives, most of the viewing audience had only a vague acquaintance with the word.

10. Mobisodes (Not another season of the Sopranos, but one-minute TV episodes designed specifically for mobile media.)
Show: Every ‘hip’ show worldwide.
Comment: Coming soon to a cell phone near you.

Words No Longer Hip

Word: “Youre Fired”
Show: The Apprentice
Comment: Top of last years TeleWORDS List, plunges in a precipitous decline.

Word: “Mess O Potamia”
Show: The Daily Show
Comment: Jon Stewart’s quip cuts a bit too close to reality these days.

Words With Legs
Words: “Yadda, yadda, yadda!”
Show: Seinfeld
Comment: During the summer, its repeats were besting Prime Time Network Comedies.

Largest Global Phenomenon of a Single Word:
“Idol/Idool/Idolo”
Comment: American Idol writ large. Now more than two dozen Idol-type shows from South Africa to India.

Top Word From Down Under: Free to Air TV
Comment: For the first time, 2005 saw the cable industrys share of the TV market in the US, exceed that of Network Television.

Top TV Name in China: Mickey Mouse
Comment: Opening of the new Hong Kong Theme Park during Golden Week impacts the airwaves.

Coolest ‘unCool’ Series: New Zealands Fair Go
Comment: The show defends consumers against injustice, even battling (and winning) for a one-cent discrepancy

You’re Fired!” Edges “Mess O’ Potamia” Atop Television Buzzwords (TeleWords) List for 2003-‘04

Followed Closely “Girlie Men,” “God,” and “Wardrobe Malfunction”

Danville, California (September 16, 2004) “You’re Fired!”, Donald Trump’s trademark catchphrase from The Apprentice reality show tops the Television Buzzword List (TeleWords) for 2003-‘04 Season according to the Global Language Monito ).

Close behind were “Mess O Potamia” from The Daily Show With Jon Stewart, “Girlie Men,” from Californias Gov. Schwarzenegger, “God,” from Joan of Arcadia and Angels in America, and “Wardrobe Malfunction,” from the recent Miss Universe Pageant as well as Super Bowl XXXVIII.

Rounding out the Top Ten were: “Infectious disease,” from the ever-expanding C.S.I franchise, “OCD” for Tony Shaloub’s trademark Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder from Monk, “The O.C.” as a geographic entity from The O.C., Extreme Makeover” from any of the reality-based show genre, and “Grim Reaper” from Dead Like Me.

Words No Longer Hip include “fahgeddaboutit” from The Sopranos, “Voted off the island”, from the Survivor series, and ” so ” as an intensive, as in ” so yesterday!” or “so not fair!” from Friends.

Television has always had a disproportionate impact on culture, reverberating far beyond the confines of the studio world. This is true even in a year marked by extraordinary events,” said Paul JJ Payack, president of The Global Language Monitor. “Weve chosen the words and phrases most likely to have a lasting impact on popular culture; Youre Fired! is but one example that we hear repeated endlessly in the media and on the internet, while “Mess O Potamia” more closely reflected world events.”

Television Buzzword List (TeleWords) for 2003-‘04 Season is released in conjunction with the 56th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards televised by the ABC Television Network on Sunday, September 19th from the Los Angeles Shrine Auditorium.

The complete list, with commentary, is shown below.

The Top TeleWords of the 2003-04 Television Season

TeleWords / Show / Comment

1. You’re Fired!
Show: The Apprentice
Comment: Donald Trump’s signature phrase

2. Mess O’ Potamia
Show: The Daily Show With Jon Stewart
Comment: More 18-49s get their news from Daily Show than mainstream media

3. Girlie Men
Show: Gov. Schwarzenegger of California
Comment: Transcends politics moving into pop culture

4. God
Show: Joan of Arcadia and Angels in America
Comment: Supreme Being made quite a comeback on the small screen

5. Wardrobe Malfunction
Show: Miss Universe Pageant; Super Bowl XXXVIII
Comment: Recent Miss Universe incident reinforces the phrase

6. Infectious Disease
Show: CSI Franchise
Comment: Evidently nothing can contain the CSI franchise

7. OCD
Show: Monk
Comment: Tony Shaloub’s trademark Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

8. The O.C. as a geographic entity
Show: The O.C.
Comment: TV literally is a ‘geography of the mind’

9. Extreme Makeover
Show: From any of the reality-show genre
Comment: Both ‘extreme’ and ‘makeover,’ in any combination

10. Grim Reaper
Show: Dead Like Me
Comment: Hasn’t made such an impact in popular culture since Ingmar Bergman’s “Seventh Seal”

Words No Longer Hip

Word: Fahgeddaboutit!
Show: The Sopranos
Comment: Forget about Fahgeddaboutit!

Word: Voted Off the Island
Show: Survivor Series
Comment: Voted off the TeleWord List

Word: ” so” as an intensive
Show: Friends
Comment: As in “…so yesterday” or “…so not fair”

Read: “You’re Fired!” Leads US List of TV Phrases (UK)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tsunami

Tsunami Cascades in Worldwide Media

Tsunami-related product names undergo intense scrutiny; sporting organizations reassess tsunami-related team names

Danville, California (Fenruary 10, 2005) MetaNewsWire The recent tragedy unfolding insouth Asia has had a profound impact on the usage of the word tsunami in the worldwide media, according to an analysis released earlier today by The Global language Monitor (GLM).

Read: Disaster dominates world focus (The Australian)

According to The GLM’s PQ Index, the word peaked at some 27,000,000 media appearances (a rise of some 800% over what one would find in a typical year). When limited to tracking the major global news media, there were some 155,000 stories involving the tsunami since December 26th, compared compared to 15,000 stories mentioning the word tsunami over the prior two years. The PQ Index is a proprietary algorithm that tracks words in the global print and electronic media, and on the internet.

“This provides a measure of both the scope of the tragedy and the manner in which the entire world community has responded to this unprecedented series of events,” said Paul JJ Payack, President, The Global Language Monitor.The word tsunami is unusual in that it has been directly incorporated into hundreds of languages worldwide without translation since it is a technical term. Since first appearing in English around 1905, tsunami has been used to describe the phenomenon of long-sequence ocean waves usually resulting from undersea seismic activity.

Other descriptions are considered technically incorrect, such as the English tidal wave, since tsunamis have nothing to do with the ebbing and flowing of tides or tidal currents. The word is of Japanese origin meaning harbor (tsu) wave (nami). As caught on video throughout the region, immediately preceding a tsunami strike, water is often drawn out of harbors and bays, before it comes rushing back in with devastating force.

“Before September 11th (2001) the term, ground zero, was a common business cliche meaning to go back to the starting point, especially when beginning a project over again as in going back to ground zero. Since Ground Zero now represents what many consider to be hallowed ground, such usage is rarely employed,” said Payack, “In the same manner, we envision that the word tsunami, will be the subject of considerable discretion before being used in anything other than a most serious manner.”

Of course, in its original context, the term ‘ground zero’ meant the blast epicenter of a nuclear device, such as that dropped on Hiroshima in August 1945.

In the world of sports there appear to be thousands of teams worldwide that incorporate the word tsunami into their names. These range from the Tsunami Aquatics Swim team of Livermore, California to the Hampshire Tsunami Paintball Team (UK) to the Pearl Harbor (Hawaii) Swim Club.

The world of consumer packaged goods is also sure to be impacted by the disaster. GLM’s analysis shows that there are some 10,000 products thatincorporate tsunami into their names. These include everything from Tsunami Point-to-Point Wireless Bridges, Tsunami Multimedia Speakers, and Tsunami Image Processors.

Read: Toyota drops ‘Tsunami’ name for sports car

Read: FEMA Yanks Tsunami Game in Disaster’s Wake

News organizations will also have to think twice before leading with headlines such as these:

  • ”A Tsunami of Silliness” — The London Telegraph’s review of Michael Crichton’s new State of Fear thriller (December 19, 2004)

  • ”A Tsunami of Japanese Pop Culture Cartoon- and Comic-related Products are Flooding into the US” — BusinessWeek (April 30, 2004)

  • “Ford Releases a Tsunami of New Products” — Detroit News (April 2004)

However, this hasn’t stopped headline writers from incorporating the newly-heightened emotionally and psychologically freighted word into headlines of the last week:

  • “A Tsunami of Debt” — San Francisco Chronicle
  • “A Tsunami of Scandal” — Minneapolis Star-Tribune
  • “A Tsunami of Greed” — Village Voice (New York)

Read: The World Learns to Choose it Words Carefully (Time)

Read: Disaster Changes Use of Word ‘Tsunami’ (China Daily)

Read: AlertNet (Reuters)

Hollywood

‘Jai Ho!’ and ‘Slumdog’ top HollyWORDs of 2008

followed by ‘Hmong,’ ‘Nuke the Fridge’ and ‘Twinkie defense’

6th Annual Survey by the Global Language Monitor

Austin, TX. February 26, 2009. ‘Jai Ho!’ and ‘Slumdog’ from Slumdog Millionaire top the 2008 list of words from Hollywood that most influenced the English Language in 2008. Closely following were ‘Hmong’ fromGran Torino, ‘Nuke the Fridge’ from Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull and ‘Twinkie defense’ (which followed the events depicted in Milk). It was the first time that two words from the same movie were ranked in the Top Ten. Rounding out the Top Ten were: ‘Djembe’ (The Visitor), “There are no coincidences” (Kung Fu Panda), ‘What doesn’t kill you makes you … stranger,” (The Dark Knight), Posthumous (The Wrestler), and Katrina from Benjamin Button.

“2008 was a remarkable year for words in films, with a Hindi phrase, the name of a Laotian tribe, a West African drum, and a modified quotation from Frederick Nietzsche all making the list,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor.

The Top Hollywords of the 2008 with commentary follow.

  1. Jai Ho! (Slumdog Millionaire) – Literally ‘Let there be Victory’ in Hindi.
  2. Slumdog (Slumdog Millionaire) – Definitely a politically incorrect term for young slum-dwellers in Bombay (Mumbai).
  3. Nuke the Fridge (Indiana Jones and the ) – Indiana Jones surviving a nuclear blast in a lead-lined fridge is viewed as proof that the franchise has run its course (similar to Fonzi’s Jump the Shark episode on Happy Days).
  4. Hmong (Gran Torino) – The name of the mountain-dwelling peoples of Laos who were US Allies in the Indochinese Wars of the 1960-70s. Pronounced with a silent ‘h’: mong.
  5. Twinkie Defense (Milk) – The apocryphal outcome of the trial 1979 trial of Dan White, the former San Francisco Supervisor who killed both Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone. The term was never actually used in the trial but was picked up in the media as a stand-in for ‘diminished capacity’.
  6. Djembe (The Visitor) – West African percussion instrument that Tarek teaches Walter.
  7. There are no coincidences (Kung Fu Panda) – Oogway’s solemn pronouncement to Master Shifu
  8. What doesn’t kill you makes you … stranger (The Dark Knight) – The Joker’s twist on the famous Nietzsche epigram.
  9. Posthumous (The Wrestler) – Yes, that really was Mickey Rourke as a Best Actor nominee, well after he had been pronounced dead many a time.
  10. Katrina (Benjamin Button) – The ominous and pervasive threat of Katrina framing the movie demonstrates the depth to which the hurricane has penetrated the American subconscious.

Previous Top HollyWord Winners:

2007 “Call it, Friendo,” from “No Country for Old Men”

2006 “High Five!!! Its sexy time!’ from “Borat!”

2005 ‘Brokeback’ from “Brokeback Mountain”

2004 “Pinot” from “Sideways”

2003 ‘’Wardrobe malfunction” from Super Bowl XXXVIII

The Global Language Monitor uses a proprietary algorithm, the Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI) to track the frequency of words and phrases in the global print and electronic media, on the Internet, throughout the Blogosphere, as well as accessing proprietary databases.The PQI is a weighted Index, factoring in: long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum, and velocity.

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Top HollyWORDIEs of 2007

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“Call it, Friendo” “I drink your milkshake” and “Juno-verse”

San Diego , Calif. March 11, 2008. “Call it, Friendo” from the multi-Oscar winner No Country for Old Men, ‘Drink your milkshake” from There Will Be Blood, and the various phrasings from what has come to be known as the Juno-verse, from the teen pregnancy sleeper, were named the Top HollyWORDIEs of 2007. The annual survey by the Global Language Monitor tracks the words from Hollywood that most influenced the English Language. “Maddness? This is S-P-A-R-T-A!” from The 300, and “I’m not the guy you kill; I’m the guy you buy off.” from Michael Clayton rounded out the top five.

Tú decides, amigo” El Pais (Madrid)

“This year, the top HollyWORDS tended to be phrases rather than individual words as in years past,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor “The selected phrases have already begun to seep into the ‘English language as evidenced by even a cursory web search.”

“High Five!!! Its sexy time!’ from Borat! were the top words of 2006, while ‘Brokeback’ from Brokeback Mountain , “Pinot” from Sideways, and “wardrobe malfunction” were nabbed for top honors previous to that.

The Top HollyWORDS of 2007 follow:

1. “Call it, Friendo.” (No Country for Old Men) – Chigurth’s flip of the coin (Javier Bardem).

2. “I drink your milkshake.” (No Country for Old Men) – “I drink it up!” Daniel Day Lewis.

3. Juno-verse (Juno) — phraseology includes “doodle that can’t be undid,” “Silencio”, and, of course, “Shoulda gone to China , because I hear they give away babies like free iPods.” (Ellen Page).

4. “Maddness? This is S-P-A-R-T-A!” (The 300) – Kin Leonardis engages the Persians in Battle (Gerald Butler).

5. “I’m not the guy you kill; I’m the guy you buy off.” (Michael Clayton) – Michael Clayton’s self description (George Clooney)

6. “I think I am beginning to disappear.” (Away From Her) — (Julie Christie)

7. “Either you’re somebody, or you ain’t nobody.” (American Gangster) – Frank Lucas (Denzel Washington).

8. “Squeezin’ that watch won’t stop time.” (3:10 to Yuma ) – Ben Wade (Russell Crowe)

9. “Sometimes birth and death go together.” (Eastern Promises) — Anna (Naomi Watts)

10. “It was the things you don’t choose that makes you who you are.” (Gone Baby Gone) — Casey Affleck as Patrick Kenzie

‘High Five!!! Its sexy time!’ from Borat! And ‘Hollywood Baby Names’ from the Celebrity Cultural Milieu, Named Top Words from Hollywood Impacting The English Language

Last Year, ‘Brokeback’ from Brokeback Mountain topped the Annual Survey by the Global Language Monitor; in 2005 ‘Pinot’ from Sideways Topped the List

‘High Five!!! Its sexy time!’ from Borat! and

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Hollywood Baby Names’ from the Celebrity Cultural Milieu

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Named top Words from Hollywood for 2006

San Diego. March 5, 2007. ‘High Five!!! Its sexy time!’ from Borat! and ‘Hollywood Baby Names’ from the Celebrity Cultural Milieu, have named top Words from Hollywood impacting the English Language by the Global Language Monitor in its annual survey. Closely following were ‘Pursuit,’ from Will Smith’s Pursuit of Happyness, ‘Nazi Bullets,’ from ‘Little Miss Sunshine,’ and ‘I will not serve!’ Frank Costello’s driving force in The Departed.

The annual Oscar ceremony is an appropriate time to measure the state of Global English — and it’s all on view here: the soaring prose, the refinement — and the vulgarity,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of the Global Language Monitor.

The Global Language Monitor analyzes and catalogues the latest trends in word usage and word choices, and their impact on the various aspects of culture. The Top HollyWORDS are released in conjunction with the 79th Academy Awards ceremony that were broadcast from the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday.

Top HollyWORDS for Impact Upon the English Language in 2006 with commentary follow.

1. “High Five!!!! It’s sexy time!” (Borat) – Borat’s wedge into doing or saying anything he pleases on his American Tour.

2. Suri, Shiloh Nouvel, and the rest of the Hollywood Babyland parade. (Hollywood Baby names) — Opening an entire new world of possibilities to young parents, who are taking to the idea of ultimately, outré, names to inflict upon, err, bestow upon their children.

3. Pursuit (Pursuit of Happyness) – Will Smith’s stunning epiphany from the words penned by Thomas Jefferson some 230 years ago.

4. Nazi bullets (Little Miss Sunshine) — “I still got Nazi bullets in my ass.” Grandpa’s excuse to do or say anything he pleases.

5. Non Serviam (The Departed) – “I will not serve” from James Joyce. Franks Costello’s pledge as he refuses to be a product of his environment. He wants his “environment to be a product of me”.

6. A reluctant cannibal (Last King of Scotland) — Forest Whittaker’s portrayal of an illiterate, brutal African dictator, who may or may not enjoy feasting upon his victim.

7. A Moral Issue (An Inconvenient Truth) — … and not a political issue. Al Gore’s chilling documentary about Global Warming and it ultimate impact upon the human environment.

8. “Will someone please save these people from themselves!” (The Queen) — Tony Blair’s observations of The Royals as he attempts to heal the rift between The Queen and her subjects.

9. “Help! Ayúdenme! HELP!” (BABEL) Crying for help in a land apparently with out ears.

10. “The details of your incompetence do not interest me.” (Devil Wears Prada) – Meryl Streep with yet another nurturing remark to those who surround (and serve) her.

11. Classic Figures (Dreamgirls) –For more than 200,000 years of human history these were the celebrated dimensions of women. What was the tipping point? Twiggy in the 60s?

12. Labyrinth (Pan’s Labyrinth) — Before ‘quagmire’s’ there were ‘labyrinths’. In the 21st Century ‘labyrinth’ is perhaps the better word.

13. Film Noir (Black Dahlia) — Plenty of ‘noir’ but not much ‘film’ in the Black Dahlia. Perhaps Film Noir is better suited to a less cynical age.

14. Arrgh! (Pirate of the Caribbean, Dead Man’s Chest) — Spreading ever more deeply into popular culture.

15. “Rotemorizing” (Akeelah and the Bee) — The technique of blindly memorizing spelling words.

16. “Make us disappear!” (The Illusionist) – Sophie’s request to a young Eisenheim (Ed Norton).

17. maya yucateco (Apocolypto) — Mel’s Gibson’s choice of language for his film depicting a collapsing civilization. (Actually still spoken from some 6 million Maya descendants in the Yucatan.)

18. Dame (Notes on a Scandal) — What more can be said: Dame Judi Dench, Indeed.

19. Hero (Flags of our Fathers) – Some thing the ‘heroes’ of Iwo Jima never asked to be, much like their 9/11 grandsons.

20. Chica chica, boom boom (Happy Feet) — That’s just one sign that attack of spontaneous happy feet dancing is about to begin.

Top Words for 2006 and 2005

In 2006,‘Brokeback’ from multi-Oscar nominated film ‘Brokeback Mountain’ was named the Top HollyWORD in the Global Language Monitor’s annual survey of words from Hollywood that profoundly influenced the English Language. In 2005, ‘Pinot’ from the movie Sideways, was named the Top HollyWORD.Sunday Times (London):

And now, the first grown-up Oscar speech features the Global Language Monitor

Click Here.

Click Here to see Grade-Level Ranking of Selected Oscar Acceptance Speeches.The Annual Survey by the Global Language Monitor
San Diego. Updated March 5, 2006. ‘Brokeback’ from multi-Oscar nominated film ‘Brokeback Mountain’ was named the Top HollyWORD of the Year in The Global Language Monitor’s annual survey of words from Hollywood that profoundly influenced the English Language.
Closely following were ‘Brangelina’ from ‘Mr. & Mrs. Smith,’ ‘ ‘Petronoia’ from ‘Syriana,’ ‘Tuxedo’ from ‘March of the Penguins,’ and ‘Pimping’ from “Hustle & Flow’.

Brokeback’ named Top HollyWORD of 2006 Followed by ‘Brangelina’, ‘Petronoia,’ and ‘Tuxedo’

Rounding out the Top Ten were ‘Milk Money’ from ‘Cinderella Man,’ ‘Dostoevskian’ from ‘Revenge of the Sith,’ ‘Tepid’ from the 2005 Movie Season, ‘the Inklings’ from ‘The Chronicles of Narnia,’ and ‘Don’t Panic’ from ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’.

For better or for worse, The Hollywood dream-factory continues to make its contribution to the Global English vocabulary, either by creating new words, such as ‘Brokeback’ or re-defining (and/or transmitting) others,“ said Paul JJ Payack, President of the Global Language Monitor. The Global Language Monitor analyzes and catalogues the latest trends in word usage and word choices, and their impact on the various aspects of culture.

The Top HollyWORDS are released in conjunction with the 78th Academy Awards ceremony, to be broadcast from the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, March 5th at 8:00 pm Eastern.

Top HollyWORDS for Impact Upon the English Language in 2005 with commentary follows.

1. Brokeback (Brokeback Mountain) – A cultural phenomenon (Brokeback, Brokedown, etc.) with almost a million references to Brokeback jokes alone on Google. Overall there are some 30 million references though only 10 million saw the movie.

2. Brangelina (Mr. And Mrs. Smith) – The Brad Pitt – Angelina Jolie romance / relationship / spectacle without the Scientology angle. TomKat (Tom Cruise / Katy Holmes) comes in a close second, with Vincifer (Jennifer Aniston – Vince Vaughn) placing a distant third.

3. Petronoia (Syriana) — Everything may be connected in this politically-charged thriller and it’s all connected through ‘petronoia’ the (ir)rational fear of the collapse in the oil industry precipitating global economic crisis.

4. Tuxedo (March of the Penguins) – Though the dialogue, not to mention the stars, were a bit stiff, this chronicle about Emperor penguins in their breeding trek across Antarctica flew to remarkable heights. Also, very clever product placement that few apparently noticed: dinner jackets.

5. Pimping (Hustle and Flow) – Evidently ‘Ho’ and ‘bitch’ have already been approved by the network censors, and pimping gets another boost.

6. Milk (Money) (Cinderella Man) – The reason for James J. Braddock’s comeback. He claimed he now knew the reason for his success: He was no fighting for ‘Milk’.

7. Dostoevskian (Revenge of the Sith) – Certainly not for the screenplay, but rather for the completion of Lukas’ multi-generational, six-film saga depicting the ongoing battle between good and evil to a universal audience.

8. Tepid (The 2005 Movie Season) — With grosses down some 6% from a slow 2004, studio execs blamed everything except uninspiring choices. This was the year of the small film.

9. The Inklings (Chronicles of Narnia) — The informal writers club to which C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien both belonged. Together the good professors’ films have grossed over $3 billion. Not bad for a couple of Oxford dons. 1

0. Don’t Panic (Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) – Though a flop, the film contained excellent advice for just about any situation in the 21st Century.

11. 1933 (King Kong) – That’s the version you should have seen. “Oh no, it wasn’t the airplanes. It was the re-make that killed both beauty and the beast.”

12. Bird Flu (H5N1) (War of the Worlds) – Thanks to HG Wells, a positive use for Avian Flu: destroying alien life forms.

13. Crusaders (Kingdom of Heaven) – Luckily this wasn’t a big enough hit among the infidels to cause any worldwide riots.

14. Folsom (Walk the Line) – The name now is synonymous for the Man in Black.

15. Expediency (Munich) – Some times political values trump moral values.

Last year ‘Pinot’ from the movie ‘Sideways’ was named the Top HollyWORD of the Year. Closely following were ‘genius’ (Ray), ‘handwashing’ (The Aviator, The Passion, and Hotel Rwanda), ‘mo chuisle’ (Million Dollar Baby), and ‘The Gipper’ (Knute Rockne Story, 1941).

Pinot’ named Top HollyWORD of 2005

Followed by ‘genius,’ ‘Handwashing,’ ‘mo chuisle,’ and ‘the Gipper’

Danville, Calif. February 24, 2005. MetaNewsWire ‘Pinot’ from the movie ‘Sideways’ was named Top HollyWORD of the Year in The Global Language Monitor’s annual list of words from Hollywood that profoundly influenced the English Language. Closely following were ‘genius’ (Ray), ‘handwashing’ (The Aviator, The Passion, and Hotel Rwanda), ‘mo chuisle’ (Million Dollar Baby), and ‘The Gipper’ (Knute Rockne Story, 1941).

Rounding out the Top Tenwere ‘Neverland’ (Neverland), ‘antiquity’ (Troy and Alexander), ‘OCD’ or Obsessive-compulsive Disorder (The Aviator), ‘Fahrenheit’ (Fahrenheit 9/11) and ‘Yo!’ (Garden State).

Hollywood has an all-encompassing, pervasive, and global influence,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of the Global Language Monitor. “There is no question that in 2004, the Hollywood dream-factory continued to have a most profound impact upon word choice and usage for Global English.”

The Global Language Monitor analyzes and catalogues the latest trends in word usage and word choices, and their impact on the various aspects of culture.

The Top HollyWORDS are released in conjunction with the 77th Academy Awards ceremony, to be broadcast on the ABC Television Network, Sunday, February 27th at 8:00 pm Eastern.

Read: ‘Pinot’ wins an Oscar for word of the year (MSNBC)

Read: BBC NEWS | Entertainment | Sideways helps spread wine jargon

Read: Verso l’Oscar: il “Pinot” si merita un premio (Italia)

Top HollyWords for Impact Upon the English Language in 2004 with commentary follows.

1. Pinot (Sideways) — An often misunderstood and sensitive varietal, one of the most difficult grapes to make into a fine wine.

2. Genius (Ray) Ray Charles. ‘Nuff said.

3. Hand Washing (Howard Hughes in The Aviator, Pontious Pilate in The Passion, and the World Community in Hotel Rwanda)

4. “Mo chuisle” (Million Dollar Baby) Actually a typo in the film; from a longer phrase meaning pulse of my heart: a chuisle mo chroi, and not my darling as translated by Eastwood.

5. The Gipper (The Knute Rockne Story, 1940) JFK was the first president elected because of his understanding of the coolness of the television medium, but there is little doubt that without Hollywood, there would have been no President Reagan.

6. Neverland (Finding Neverland) — Unfortunately another version of Neverland can be found north of Santa Barbara where you wish you had NO imagination.

7. Antiquity — The Athens Olympics beats out both Troy and Alexander as the best example of a Hollywood production epitomizing the glory that was Greece.

8. OCD or Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (The Aviator) — Leonardo DiCaprio’s portrayal of Howard Hughes makes the small screens Monk look like a model of mental sanity.

9. Girlie Men (On-going California Follies) — The Honorable Governator of California CAH-a-FON-nee-ahs term for political adversaries.

10. Yo! (Garden State) — Another coming of age homage to North Jersey.

11. Animation — Four of the Top 11 grossing films of 2004 were animated features (Shrek2, The Incredibles, The Polar Express, and Shark Tales).

12. Snub — As in Paul Giamatti, The Passion, Fahrenheit 9/11, and House of Flying Daggers

13. Small Screen (Five Best Actor Nominees) — All have small screen roots: Johnny Deep (21 Jump Street), Leonardo DiCaprio (Growing Pains), Jamie Foxx (In Living Color), Clint Eastwood (Rawhide), and Don Cheadle (Picket Fences).

14. Frass (Sideways) — Frass Valley Winery is actually named for insect droppings.

15. Fahrenheit (Fahrenheit 9/11) Reintroduced Europeans to that very un-metric (and impolitic) temperature scale.

Wardrobe Malfunction Named Top HollyWORD of 2004

Parley Hollywood: Keira Invents a New Language (Daily Mail, London)

Linguists comb Tinseltown for catchy phrases, terms

By MARK PETIX
The Press-Enterprise
19-MAR-04

Hollywood gives us stars and fashion _ and “Holly Words.” A look at some new catch phrases the entertainment world has given us this year:

The Top 10 candidates:

1. Wardrobe malfunction (Super Bowl) — From the Janet Jackson/Justin Timberlake incident.

2. Bootylicious (Grammys) — A woman who has an abundance of adipose tissue in the gluteus maximus.

3. Extreme makeover — From various makeover shows, particularly the one of that name.

4. Gigli - New word for “really bad.”

5. Give it up! (“American Idol”) — Replaces the square “please applaud for …”

6. Governator — The honorable governor of “CAH-lee-FOR-nee-ah.”

7. Parley (“Pirates of the Caribbean”) — From pirates’ code of the brethren, where one cannot be harmed until one has an audience with the captain.

8. Snap (“Freaky Friday”) — As in “Oh snap!,” meaning “very cool.”

9. Smiths (“The Matrix” sequels) — To lack individuality, like the multi-duplicated Agent Smith.

10. Understated (“Lost in Translation”) — The new synonym for “loser.”

Bonus: Who are you wearing? (Various red-carpet shows) _ For most of us, the answer is “Target” or “Madame Wal-Mart.”

And the winner is …

Wardrobe malfunction.”

The immortal words of pop star and disgraced Super Bowl costume assistant Justin Timberlake beat out “bootylicious” and “Gigli” to top this year’s list of Hollywood contributions to the English language, according to The Global Language Monitor.

The Danville, Calif.-based group of “linguists, wordsmiths and language professors” makes its mission to track Tinseltown’s generous, and frequent, gifts to the English language.

It’s a job that grows harder every year, said Paul JJ Payack, president and “WordMan” for Global Language Monitor.

The Internet spreads “HollyWords” like lightning, Payack said.

So when anything happens, it’s magnified,” he said.

The Monitor relies greatly on its network of “observers,” the hip and observant Internet correspondents who let Payack know when “give it up” or “extreme makeover” make the big jump into the mainstream.

It wasn’t hard to see “Gigli” coming. Payack did a little math on the opening weekend of the Ben Affleck-Jennifer Lopez box-office disaster and found the film was pulling in an average of two people per showing.

Gigli” won a total of six Razzies, including worst picture, worst actress and worst actor for Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez.

Hence: “‘Gigli,’ ‘Gigli’ bad,” Payack said.

Not forever, because new words and phrases tend to come and go with the tides, although last year’s winner, “embedded,” is showing some staying power.

The next new word could be as close as the next awards show, although Payack said movies are a steady source of more colorful language.

Payack said there are more than 3,200 entries describing Bill Murray’s performance in “Lost in Translation” as “understated.”

That’s good enough to earn the No. 10 spot on the list and crown “understated” as the new Hollywood word for “loser.”

Because language never sleeps, Payack is already looking ahead. He thinks the projected $1 billion-plus earning potential for “The Passion of the Christ” makes “Aramaic” the word to watch. ”I think it’s going to mean ‘bling-bling,’ ” he said.

Explainers

Katrina Disaster Buzzword Explainer

San Diego, Calif. September 2, 2005. MetaNewswire. The Global Language Monitorin response to worldwide demand, has created this Hurricane Disaster Buzzword Explainer to help readers understand the many buzzwords, acronyms, and odd turns of phrase that are being employed in relation to the Hurricane Katrina disaster in New Orleans as it unfolds.

GLM’s List is an ongoing compilation, updated daily; we welcome contributions from around the globe.

The current list with associated commentary follows:

Acadians — French-speaking people who were expelled from Nova Scotia exactly 250 years ago and settled in the bayou. Subject of the epic poem, Evangeline, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. See Cajun.

Army Corps of Engineers — The USACE is responsible for investigating, developing and maintaining the nation’s water and related environmental resources.

Astrodome — The first enclosed stadium in the US; refugees from the SuperDome will be transported 350 miles to the Astrodome.

Bayou — A slow moving stream or river that runs through the marshlands surrounding New Orleans; home of Cajun Culture.

Big Easy — The nickname for the city of New Orleans, from the laidback lifestyle one finds there.

Breach — Sudden overpowering of a levee, or a floodwall, that allows water to seep or rush in.

Cajun — Literally, Louisianan who descends from French-speaking Acadians, who in 1755 were expelled from Nova Scotia.

Category — The intensity of a hurricane using various measurements including velocity of sustained wind. Categoies range from 1 (weakest) to 5 (strongest). Katrina peaked at Category 5.

Climate Change — The warming of the Earths atmosphere due to natural cycles (politically sensitive; believed to be primarily outside the control of man.) See Global Warming.

Creole — Derives from the Latin creare, meaning “to create.” By the nineteenth century, black, white, and mixed-race Louisianans used the term to distinguish themselves from foreign-born and Anglo-American settlers.

Cyclone — A developing tropical storm, rotating counterclockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere. Often confused with but NOT a tornado.

Eye — The center of the hurricane where the skies are clear and the wind is nearly calm.

FEMA — Federal Emergency Management Agency, branch of the US Homeland Security Department. FEMA coordinates the US Federal government’s response to national disasters.

Floating Casinos — Casinos located along the Mississippi coast bringing an annual average revenue of $2.7 billion a year to that state.

Flood Control — The building of levees, pumping stations, sea walls, etc. to keep a city safe from flooding.

Flood Stage — Flood stage is reached when the water in a stream or river over-tops the banks or levees along the banks.

Flood Wall — Narrow, steel and concrete barrier erected to keep the Mississippi River out of New Orleans.

French Quarter — The original living area of the city, now known for Jazz, Cajun cuisine, and Carnival. Located at the highest point of the city.

Global Warming — In theory, the warming of the Earths atmosphere caused primarily by human use of fossil fuels (Politically sensitive; believed to be primarily in the control of man.) See Climate Change.

Hurricane Names — Hurricanes have been named since 1953. Currently, the World Meteorological Organization maintains the alphabetically sorted list of alternating men’s and women’s names. The list was exclusively female until 1979. Names are recycled every 6 years. Influential hurricanes have their names retired.

Hurricane — A tropical cyclone with a sustained surface wind is 74 mph (118 kmh) or more. A hurricane is called a typhoon in the Pacific Ocean.

Hurricane Scale — See Categories.

Hurricane Season — The hurricane season in the Atlantic runs from June 1 to November 30; in the Eastern Pacific, the season begins on May 15 and ends on November 30.

Hurricane Watch/Warning — An official warning that a hurricane is expected to hit a specific area of the coast with 36 hours (watch) or within 24 hours (warning).

Isobar — Isobars around a cyclone are lines on a map that signify the same barometric pressure.

Katrina — The 11th tropical storm of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season.

Knot — Wind speed equal to 1.15 Miles Per Hour (MPH) or 1.9 Kilometers Per Hour (KM/HR).

Lake Pontchatrain — Actually, an arm of the sea that borders on New Orleans. Lake Pontchatrain is half the size of the state of Rhode Island.

Levee — Colossal earthen barriers erected to keep water out of the city. Once breeched, levees hinder relief efforts by holding the water inside the city. New Orleans has 350 miles of hurricane levees; they were built to withstand a fast-moving Category 3 storm. Katrina was a Category 4+ storm.

National Guard — Military units organized at the state level to protect the citizens of an individual state.

Norlins — Local pronunciation of the name of the city of New Orleans.

Public Health Emergency — Cholera and typhoid are among the concerns caused by contaminated water.

Pumping Stations — Massive, yet old and inefficient pump houses that would keep any seepage out of New Orleans.

Recovery — To recover the dead after search and rescue operations are complete.

Relief and Response Effort — To provide food, medical supplies and shelter to refuges of a disaster.

Sandbag — Three- to twenty-thousand pound burlap-type containers dropped from Chinook helicopters to plug breaches in levee.

Saffir-Simpson Scale — Used to give an estimate of potential damage and flooding along the coast. Wind speed is the determining factor in the scale. See Category.

Search and Rescue — To search for survivors.

Storm Surge — Sudden rising of the sea over its usual level, preceding the arrival of a hurricane. The Thirty-foot surge on the Mississippi coastline was the highest ever recorded for North America.

Superdome — Home to the New Orleans Saints football team, the Sugar Bowl and numerous professional football championships (Super Bowls).

Tropical Depression — An area of intense thunderstorms becomes organized into a cyclone. Maximun sustained winds reach 34 knots. There is at least one ‘closed’ isobar with a decrease in barometric pressure in the center of the storm.

Tropical Storm — Sustained winds increase to up to 64 knots and the storm begins to look like a hurricane.

Vertical Evac — Vertical evacuation, taking refuge in the topfloors of a high-rise building. In this case, this sort of evacuation often proved fatal.

Analysis

For Political Analysis, go to Politics page

Commentary:

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Is Merriam-Webster its own worst frenemy?

60% of new words in 2009 Collegiate were born before today’s college students

‘New’ words average age — 29 years

Austin, TX July 16, 2009, (MetaNewswire) – Is Merriam-Webster its own worst frenemy? The answer to that question can perhaps be answered by the upcoming release of its Collegiate DictionaryEleventh Edition with the addition of almost 100 new words and word meanings (or senses).  The average of these “new words” is twenty-nine years, according to Merriam-Webster’s itself.

The ‘new’ words (with their dates of first usage) include:

New Word or Term First Usage

Carbon footprint 1999

Flash mob 1977

Green-collar 1990

Locavore 2005

Memory foam 1987

Missalette 1977

Reggaeton 2002

Sock puppet 1959

Waterboarding 2004

Webisode 1997

These are ‘new’ words only insofar as they were never included in Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate, but on average, the words were coined more than 29 years ago (according to M-W’s own definitions). This compares with the average age of today’s college students in the mid-twenties (even with the recent shift to older students).

On the web, ‘waterboarding’ has some 2,000,000 references, ‘webisode’ about 5,000,000 and ‘sock puppet‘ some half million (according to Google). Last year ‘dark energy’ was added to the Collegiate Dictionary some ten years after it had become the subject of much scientific, philiosophical and popular debate. (It had about 10,000,000 references at the time.)

“This is perhaps why students are evermore turning to online resources to understand current affairs and class materials. The reality of today’s Internet-based communications means that new English-language words are appearing and being adopted at an ever-quickening pace,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor. “It is entirely possible some of these students heard or even used some of these words while they were still in grammar school”.

To celebrate the coming of age of English as the first, true, global language, The Global Language Monitor announced the 1,000,000th word to enter the English language on June 10, 2009. GLM estimates that a new word appears every 98 minutes, generated by the 1.5 billion people who now use English as a first, second or business language.

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Analysis: Seismic Shift to Internet in the Reporting

.of News as Evidenced by Death of Michael Jackson

The Death of Michael Jackson has become a case study in the growing disparity between the mainstream global media and their newer Internet incarnations,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of the Global Language Monitor.

The world has, indeed, witnessed a seismic shift in the reporting, analysis, and selection of news as evidenced by the recent death of Michael Jackson. In this regard, it appears as if the people have ‘voted with their clicks’ that the Internet is now an equal (if not senior) partner to the global print and electronic media.

London Telegraph:  Michael Jackson’s Death Second Biggest Story of Century

The cyber-reporting of recent events in Iran only underscores this new (and growing) phenomenon.”

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Analysis:  Michael Jackson funeral tops those of Pope John Paul II, Ronald Reagan, Princess Diana and Mother Teresa

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Measured Global Print and Electronic Media from Day of Death to Day after Funeral

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Austin, TX July 9, 2009– In an exclusive analysis performed by the Global Language Monitor, the death of Michael Jackson, the entertainment icon, has been found to be the Top Funeral in the Global Print and Electronic Media over the last dozen years . Jackson moved ahead of Pope John Paul II, whose funeral in 2005 previously set the standard.

The results follow:

  1. Michael Jackson, June 25 – July 8, 2009
  2. Pope John Paul II, April 2 – April 9, 2005
  3. Ronald Reagan, June 5 – June 10, 2004
  4. Mother Teresa, September 5 – September 14, 1997
  5. Princess Diana, August 31 – September 7, 1997

The death, aftermath, and funeral of Michael Jackson had some 18% more stories in the global print and electronic media than that of Pope John Paul II in 2005. The analysis covered the Top 5,000 print and electronic media sites, but excluded blogs and social media since they did not have a significant presence throughout the entire period of measurement.

“The death of Michael Jackson, and the media frenzy surrounding of its aftermath and his funeral, has moved Michael Jackson to the forefront of coverage of similar prominent deaths over the last dozen years,” said Paul JJ Payack, president and chief word analyst of GLM. Other prominent passings include those of Pope John Paul II, Ronald Reagan, Princess Diana and Mother Teresa. “The strength (and depth) of the global media coverage only adds to his already significant legacy and shows no sign of abetting.”

When measured in terms total web presence, Jackson outdistances Ronald Reagan, at No. 2, by more a factor of 10.

The results follow:

  1. Michael Jackson, died in 2009
  2. Ronald Reagan, died in 2004
  3. Pope John Paul II, died in 2005
  4. Princess Diana, died in 1997
  5. Mother Teresa, died in 1997

.

Why Webster’s inclusion of the phrase ‘dark energy’

demonstrates the obsolence of old-style dictionaries

Austin, TX July 8, 2008  —  Recently, Merriam-Webster announced the new words it was including in its latest edition of its Collegiate Dictionary.  These announcements are often viewed as a subject of amusement, with such additions as “air quotes,” “mental health day,” and “malware” to name but three of the hundred or so words added this year.

What did not amuse us, however, was the addition of the phrase “dark energy”.  You see dark energy is the hypothetical entity that makes up nearly three-quarters of the energy-mass of the Universe.  Moreover, it is the suspected culprit in the speeding up of the expansion of the Universe, which for reasons unknown, began to radically accelerate some five billion years ago.  It is key to the current understanding (and investigation) of the theoretical construct of the Universe, how it began — and how it will end.

Students of physics, philosophy, and cosmography at fine institutions such as Bucknell, the University of Texas, CalTech, and Foothills Community College, among all the others worldwide, have been pondering the phenomenon of dark energy for nearly a dozen years now.  However, they couldn’t look it up in their Funk & Wagnalls (nor their Webster’s) until now — because it was not recognized as a bona fide word.

Clearly, the methodologies of old-style dictionaries, first formulated by  Dr. Johnson in the 18th century and Noah Webster at the dawn of the nineteenth, and carried on to this day by their immediate and legitimate successors, have run their course.

Students on wired campuses can google dark energy and see it come up in nearly 10,000,000 results.  It is clearly a recognized phrase, clearly used by millions across the planet, embedded in learned papers, scientific studies, and contemporary letters.  And yet it was still not considered a legitimate word or phrase of the English Language, until the honor was bestowed upon it by the esteemed editors of Merriam-Webster.

Perhaps, it is time to realize that not only the game but he playing field, itself, has been drastically altered.  The center no longer holds.  This is undoubtedly spured on by the interconnectedness and immediacy of the Internet, and the explosion of the English language which now has some 1.35 billion speakers.  Clearly, new words and phrases are being created at an ever increasing rate.  It is now time to recognize the worthy few in a time-worthy manner: in step with their creation, development, and subsequent dispersal into our ever-expanding tongue.

 — Paul JJ Payack

Death of John Paul II, South Asian Tsunami, and Katrina

San Diego, California (December 16, 2005) The coverage of the Death of John Paul II, the South Asian Tsunami, and Hurricane Katrina were cited as the Top Global Media Stories for 2005 in terms of Immediate Impact. The rankings were based on the Global Language Monitor’s PQ (Predictive-quantities) Indicator.

Over the course of the year, the Top Ten Global Media Stories were Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath; The Iraq War and the ongoing story of the Iraqi people; and the controversy over Global Warming and Climate Change were named the top three stories, followed closely by the South Asian Tsunami; Asian/Bird Flu and the possibility of a global pandemic; and the continuing emergance of China on the world stage. The complete list is found below.

The Global Media, both new and old, electronic and print, Internet and Blogosphere was nearly submerged in the flood of events in 2005,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of the Global language Monitor. “We know that the news cycles are ever quickening because of the 24-hour news phenomenon as well as the new media and the Internet. However, this year it appeared that the news itself cascaded at ever increasing rates.”

The PQ (Predictive-Quantities) Indicator is a proprietary algorithm that tracks words and phrases in the print and electronic media, on the Internet and throughout the blogosphere. The words and phrases are tracked in relation to their frequency, contextual usage and appearance in global media outlets.

The Top Media Stories for 2005 (Immediate Impact) follow:

1. Death of John Paul II

2. South Asian Tsunami

3. Hurricane Katrina and its Aftermath

4. Pakistani Earthquake

The Top Ten Global Media Stories for 2005 (Over the Course of the Year) follow:

1. Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath

2. The Iraq War and the ongoing story of the Iraqi people

3. Global Warming and Climate Change

4. The South Asian Tsunami

5. Asian/Bird Flu

6. The continuing emergance of China on the world stage

7. Pakistani Earthquake

8. India as the ‘back office’ to the industrialized world

9. London Subway bombings

10. French Riots

Katrina:  Media Abounds With Apocalyptic-type References

web site hit counter

Disaster, Biblical, Global Warming, Hiroshima Top List

Refugee’ vs. ‘Evacuee’

For the Meaning and Etymology of Katrina Click Here

San Diego, Calif. September 13, 2005. MetaNewswire. In an exclusive analysis by The Global Language Monitor, the worldwide media was found to abound in Apocalyptic-type terminology in its coverage of the unfolding disaster of Hurricane Katrina in the American Gulf States.

Using its proprietary PQI (Predictive Quantities Indicator) algorithm, GLM found the ominous references to include: Disaster, Biblical, Global Warming, Hiroshima/Nuclear bomb, Catastrophe, Holocaust, Apocalypse, and End-of-the-World.

These alarmist references are coming across the spectrum of print and electronic media, and the internet,” said Paul JJ Payack, president of GLM. “The world appears stunned that the only remaining super power has apparently been humbled, on its own soil, by the forces of nature.”

The global media are mesmerized by the constant bombardment of television images of apparently rampaging, out-of-control elements, apparently in control of a good part of New Orleans, as well as the inability of the authorities to keep their own people fed, sheltered, evacuated, and, even, from dying on the street.

Refugee vs. ‘Evacuee’

GLM’s analysis found, for example, that the term for the displaced, refugees, that is usually associated with places like the Sudan and Afghanistan, appeared 5 times more frequently in the global media than the more neutral ‘evacuees,’ which was cited as racially motivated by some of the Black leadership. Accordingly, most of the major media outlets in the U.S. eliminated the usage of the word ‘refugees’ with a few exceptions, most notably, the New York Times.

The September 3 edition of The Times (London) has a story to illustrate the current state of affairs. The head: “Devastation that could send an area the size of England back to the Stone Age.”

The first 100 words sum up the pervasive mood found in the GLMs analysis of the Global Media.

AMERICA comes to an end in Montgomery, Alabama. For the next 265 miles to the Gulf Coast, it has been replaced by a dangerous and paranoid post-apocalyptic landscape, short of all the things fuel, phones, water and electricity needed to keep the 21st century switched on. By the time you reach Waveland, Mississippi, the coastal town of 6,800 where corpses lie amid a scene of Biblical devastation, any semblance of modern society has gone. “

According to GLM’s analysis, the most frequently used terms associated with Hurricane Katrina in the global media with examples follow. The terms are listed in order of relative frequency.

  • Disaster — The most common, and perhaps neutral, description. Literally ‘against the stars’ in Latin. Example: ” Disaster bares divisions of race and class across the Gulf states”. Toronto Globe and Mail.
  • Biblical — Used as an adjective. Referring to the scenes of death, destruction and mayhem chronicled in the Bible. ” …a town of 6,800 where corpses lie amid a scene of Biblical devastation”. (The Times, London)
  • Global Warming — The idea that the hand of man was directly responsible for the catastrophe, as opposed to the more neutral climate change. “…German Environmental Minister Jrgen Trittin remains stolid in his assertion that Hurricane Katrina is linked to global warming and America’s refusal to reduce emissions.” (Der Spiegel)
  • Hiroshima/Nuclear Destruction — Fresh in the mind of the media, following the 60th anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. “Struggling with what he calls Hurricane Katrina’s nuclear destruction, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour shows the emotional strain of leading a state through a disaster of biblical proportions”. (Associated Press).
  • Catastrophe — Sudden, often disastrous overturning, ruin, or undoing of a system. “In the Face of Catastrophe, Sites Offer Helping Hands”. (Washington Post)
  • Holocaust — Because of historical association, the word is seldom used to refer to death brought about by natural causes. ” December’s Asian catastrophe should have elevated “tsunami” practically to the level of “holocaust” in the world vocabulary, implying a loss of life beyond compare and as callous as this might make us seem, Katrina was many things, but “our tsunami” she wasn’t. (Henderson [NC] Dispatch)
  • Apocalypse — Referring to the prophetic visions of the imminent destruction of the world, as found in the Book of Revelations. ” Call it apocalyptic. Whatever you want to call it, take your pick. There were bodies floating past my front door. ” said Robert Lewis, who was rescued as floodwaters invaded his home. (Reuters)
  • End of the World — End-time scenarios which presage the Apocalypse. ” “This is like time has stopped Its like the end of the world.” (Columbus Dispatch)

Then there are those in the media linking Katrina with the direct intervention of the hand of an angry or vengeful God, though not necessarily aligned with Americas enemies. “The Terrorist Katrina is One of the Soldiers of Allah, But Not an Adherent of Al-Qaeda,” was written by a high-ranking Kuwaiti official, Muhammad Yousef Al-Mlaifi, director of the Kuwaiti Ministry of Endowment’s research center. It was published in Al-Siyassa. (Kuwait).

Unprecedented Global Media Outpouring

Pope John Paul II’s Passing

Record Media Outpouring

12 Million Internet Citations and 100,000 Stories in Worldwide Media

Eclipses the South Asian Tsunami, the September 11 Terrorist Attacks,

the Bush Re-election, and the Deaths of Ronald Reagan and Princess Diana

Danville, Calif. April 14, 2005. The Death of Pope John Paul II has unleashed an unprecedented global media outpouring that has transformed from a groundswell into a deluge. The Global Language Monitors daily Internet and media analysis now shows that in the major global print and electronic media and on the Internet, John Paul II’s death has surpassed the initial coverage of the South Asian Tsunami, the 9/11 Terrorist Attacks, the Bush re-election, and the Deaths of Ronald Reagan and Princess Diana, among other events that shook the world.

Since days since the Pontiffs death, there have been some 100,000 major news stories and more than 12 million Internet citations. In comparison, for the entire preceding year there were only 28,000 new stories and 1.5 million Internet citations about John Paul II.

The word historic is associated with the pontiff nearly 3,000,000 times, while conservative is associated some 1,750,000 times, and loved or beloved some 600,000 times since John Paul’s passing.

Within the first 72 hours of the Pontiff’s passing, there have been:

  • Almost 3 times as many news stories for John Paul as there were for the 9/11 Terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in 2001, though in the major global media the comparison was far closer. Some ten times more news stores than were published concerning the re-election of President Bush.

In addition, within the first 72 hours of the Pontiff’s passing, there have been:

  • More than five times as many stories as initially generated for the South Asia Tsunami on December 26-29th, 2004 (though the Tsunami swell grew unabated for some time, as the horrific scale of the tragedy became apparent).

According to Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor, “Other relevant comparisons might be the deaths of Ronald Reagan in 2004 and Princess Diana in 1997. These also, were populist-type phenomena with unprecedented outpourings of grief, though on a far more localized scale.

Perhaps the root of this phenomenon lies in the fact that ordinary people came to be acquainted with this Pope unlike any other in memory. He was personable, globetrotting, at his best as a friendly parish priest, ‘writ large’. He was a truly global Pontiff, adept at using the traditional media (and the internet) to his advantage. Evidently, on his instructions, the media was even notified of his passing via text messages and e-mail.”

To arrive at these numbers, The Global Language Monitor utilizes its proprietary Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI), which tracks specified words and phrases in the global print and electronic media and on the Internet. The words and phrases are tracked in relation to their frequency, contextual usage and appearance.

The Global Language Monitor analyzes and catalogues the latest trends in word usage and word choices, and their impact on the various aspects of culture. A worldwide assemblage of linguists, professional wordsmiths and bibliophiles, supports the GLM to help monitor the latest trends in the evolution (and demise) of language, word usage and word choices.

Read: Web Flood With Pope Coverage (CNN)

Read: Pope’s Death Spurs 35,000 Stories in a Day (BusinessWeek)

Read: Basketball Attracts More Viewers Than Pope’s Death (Reuters)

Listen: The First ‘Truly Global’ Pope (Radio Renaissance: Portugal)

Listen: The Biggest Story — Ever? (The World: NPR/BBC)

How 2004 Presidential Election Impacted Americans Speech

Danville, California (November 11, 2004) MetaNewsWire The recently concluded Presidential Election of 2004 has significantly impacted the manner in which Americans communicate with each other and not always in a positive way. For the eight months leading up to the Election, the Global Language Monitor (GLM) has tracked the way Americans communicate with each other about politics. To do this, GLM created its exclusive PQ Index (Political-sensitivity Quotient), a proprietary algorithm that tracks politically sensitive words and phrases in the print, electronic media and the Internet. Some forty words and phrases were analyzed for the Post-Election Survey, including flip flop/flopping, quagmire, Fahrenheit 911, liar!, and misleader.

The PQ Index is perhaps the most in-depth, algorithmic analysis of political word usage ever attempted during a US Presidential campaign. After meeting certain threshold criteria, the index measured how frequently the words and phrases were used in their given political contexts. Then were then tracked on a bi-weekly basis, with greater weight provided for appearances in the major media. Additionally, greater weight was assigned to changes in frequency of appearance the closer the survey came to the election, itself.

Perhaps the one point of agreement by both Republicans and Democrats in the immediate aftermath of the campaign was that moral values played a vastly more important role than had hitherto been estimated. This was re-enforced by the exit polls conducted by Edison Media Research with Mitofsky International for the National Election Pool, which distributed their information to the media through the Associated Press.

The PQ Index picked up this trend months earlier, when issues related to moral values would surface and then, actually, gain in strength as the campaign progressed. By the end of the campaign, these moral values-related words and phrases dominated the pre-Election PQ Index (Political-sensitivity Quotient) of Hot Political Buzzwords released on November 1. Specifically, thirteen or more of the top 20 words and phrases that dominated the media in the run-up to the election, can be classified as directly related to the moral values.

Both the major parties and the mainstream media appear to be surprised at the primacy of the moral values issue atop the exit-poll surveys, though they have used the terms tracked in the PQ Index some hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of times in the preceding month. What led to this miss was that fact that the moral values question was narrowly interpreted to mean the gay marriage and the Mary Cheney incident. (Both Kerry and Edwards cited the sexuality of the vice presidents daughter, Mary Cheney in their debates, a move widely viewed in the subsequent polls as gratuitous.)

In fact, the idea of moral values includes media bias, flip flopping for political gain, the question of a just or unjust war, the disrespecting of a wartime president (as in Fahrenheit 911), tagging the Chief Executive as a Liar or misleader and the rise of the uncivil war in political discourse / dis-coarse. In fact, The Top Five terms in the November PQ Index can all be viewed as related to moral values, as can be seven of the Top Ten — and 13 of the Top Twenty.

Another factor has been the rampant incivility be found in the political discourse in American politics which has reached unprecedented heights or, rather, lows. It can be argued that not since the Civil War era, when President Lincoln was frequently depicted by adversaries as a gangly, gaping baboon, has the discourse sunken to such a profane level. In fact, such is the decline in the political discourse during this campaign that future historians might actually wonder if the battle being fought was between the “Blue States” and the “Red States” rather than between the forces of Terrorism and The West.

This phenomenon is also related to the “Myth of the 24-Hour News Cycle,” where it is argued that once a politically-sensitive buzzword is launched into todays media world, it seems to persist for an indeterminate period, building a kind of media momentum and extending the news cycle rather than shrinking it. This persistence seems at odds with the general perception of the media being fixated on the 24 hours news cycle.

Some of the key words and phrases that have gained visibility during the 2004 Presidential Election follow.

Colossal Error: Kerrys judgment on Bushs Iraq policy. Evidently following California Olive Growers Association Guidelines for measuring the size of olives — Large, Extra Large, Jumbo, Gigantic, Colossal and Super Colossal. This leaves wiggle room for a ‘super-colossal error’.

Flip Flop/Flopping: Formerly referred to gymnastic routines, pancakes, and dolphin acts (Flipper); now a mainstream political term.

Girlie Men: His Honor, the Governator’s, characterization of political opponents.

Global Test: Kerrys description of the bar he would set before committing the US to pre-emptive strikes

Incuriosity: The campaign season with the President being labeled as Incurious George.

Jobless Recovery: A catch=phrase belied by the creation of 2.1 million new jobs in 2004.

Liars!: Signifies the virulence of the name-calling between opponent supporters. Bush wins the ‘Liar Poll with a 2:1 lead over Kerry.

Liberal: Now looked upon as a pejorative; for future reference, please use progressive.

Mary Cheney: For better or for worse, now a household name used in more than 100,000 media citations in the preceding six weeks..

Media Bias: A contentious issue, especially when used in conjunction with the Dan Rather “60 Minutes” imbroglio.

Misleader: MoveOn.org started this all by calling the sitting president a ‘misleader’.

Moral Values: Currently in more than 4,000 media stories; widely varies in interpretation.

Political Incivility: A catch-all category for various rude directives — Cheney, Heinz-Kerry, et al. combined here.

Quagmire: A fading, Viet Nam-era term rescued from obscurity.

Red States/Blue States: Before November 2, 2004, a relatively unknown term, a shorthand used by political pundits, describing Republican-leaning states vs. Democrat-leaning states.

Rush-to-War: The short-hand by Administration opponents for the run-up to the Iraq war.

Swift Boats: Might have torpedoed Kerrys presidential aspirations. Actually, Fast Patrol Craft (PCF), small, shallow draft-water vessels operated by the United States Navy for counterinsurgency (COIN) operations during the Vietnam War.

Two Americas: John Edwards frequent of America as divided between rich and poor, the jobless and the employed, liberals (err, progressives) and conservatives.

Myth of 24-hour News Cycle

Impacts and Undermines 2004 Presidential Campaign

October Surprise of yore short-lived compared to effect of Internet

Danville, California (October 19, 2004) Though it is commonly assumed that the media is now on a 24-hour news cycle, the opposite appears to be true, according to an exclusive analysis of The Global Language Monitor’s PQ Index (Political-sensitivity Quotient). Though the day-to-day headlines of the 2004 Presidential Campaign are relatively transient, the ideas encapsulated in the political buzzwords that GLM tracks take several months to cycle through the electronic and print media, the internet, and cyberspace, particularly the blogosphere.

Once a ‘politically-sensitive’ buzzword is launched into today’s media world, it seems to persist for an indeterminate period, building a kind of ‘media momentum’ and extending the news cycle rather than shrinking it. This persistence seems at odds with the general perception of the media being fixated on the ’24 hours news cycle’.

The PQ Index (Political-sensitivity Quotient) released monthly by The Global Language Monitoris a proprietary algorithm that tracks politically sensitive words and phrases in the media and on the Internet.

A current example: the PQ Index has been the tracking the “Swift Boats” issue for over six months as shown in Figures 1 and 2. Though it peaked in the last few weeks at No. 1 in the August Tracking Index with the release of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth ads, it remains strongly entrenched inthe Top Ten in the October survey. The evidence suggests that the issue will persist for some time to come; definitely through November 2nd.

Another example might be the labeling of President Bush as a Liar. This first surfaced in early spring as a result of ads launched by 527 organizations, such as MoveOn.org, in an action without precedent in the mainstream media, boldly labeling the sitting president a Liar. This was an early version of this years attack ads that would proliferate throughout the year, and was little noticed by the mainstream media at the time, except as a curiosity.

The ads, however, proved to be harbingers of what was to follow. Over the course of the next six months the label stuck, increasingly resonating especially on the Internet and in the blogosphere. This month the term sits at No. 11 on the PQ Index, down from No. 4 in August. In fact, Bush as Liar! is up some 1400% since the beginning of the year. An additional wrinkle is that Kerry, too, is now being labeled as a Liar! by his critics with nearly 40% of the references tracked by the PQ Index labeling the Democratic nominee as such.

Another example is the Dead and Done Presidents phenomenon. With the passing of Ronald Reagan in June and the much-anticipated publication of Bill Clintons autobiography the next month, these two former presidents, leapt to the top of the PQ Index in June and July respectively. In the October Index, they both still rank in the Top Twenty demonstrating the persistence of their long-shadows over the current campaign.

Fahrenheit, representing Michael Moores controversial film, Fahrenheit 451, took the top ranking in the July PQ Index, jumping some 400% from the previous month. Fahrenheit maintained its No. 1 position in August and currently ranks as No. 6 in the October Index. Mr. Moore, more than most, seems to have appreciated the new “Surprise” phenomenon, though for maximum impact he might have, in retrospect, released his film a month later, in August rather than July.

And now, in what could be a sign of mounting difficulties for the Democratic Presidential Campaign, this months top political buzzwords (including ‘Dan Rather-related Bias, ‘Liberal,’ Global Test,’ ‘Flip flop/flopping’ and Swift Boats) are creating an inhospitable climate, in many cases overshadowing the key messages of the Democratic Nominee, according to the October PQ Index.

In the October PQ Index, Swift Boats is actually getting more media hits and citations than all other key Kerry messages combined. These messages include; “Two Americas,” “Bush the Misleader,” “jobless recovery,” and “global outsourcing”.

With weeks remaining in the Campaign, there is a very real danger that Kerrys key messages will continue to be swamped by the “flip flop,” “Swift Boat” and “Rathergate” (and now the Mary Cheney) issues.

This is not to say that an October Surprise is not possible. Based on recent history and the uncertainty associated with al Qaeda it would be wise to expect any number of such events. However, the importance of the August Surprise with its attendant , momentum-building sustainability, should not be overlooked by current, or future, campaigns.

 — Paul JJ Payack

Top Words

Top Words of the Decade (2000-2009)

Global Warming, 9/11, and Obama outdistance Bailout, Evacuee, and Derivative; Google, Surge, Chinglish, and Tsunami follow

“Climate Change” is top phrase; “Heroes” is top name

Austin, TX November 19, 2009 – The Global Language Monitor has announced the Top Words of the Decade, as part of its annual global survey of the English language. The Top Words were ‘Global Warming’, 9/11, and Obama followed by Bailout, Evacuee, and Derivative; Google, Surge, Chinglish, and Tsunami followed. “Climate Change” was the top phrase, while “Heroes” was the top name; bin-Laden was No. 2.

“Looking at the first decade of the 21st century in words is a sober, even somber, event.” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor. “For a decade that began with such joy and hope, the words chosen depict a far more complicated and in many ways, tragic time. Nevertheless, signs of hope and renewal can be found in the overall lists.”

To see the Top Words of 2009, go here.

The words are culled from throughout the English-speaking world, which now numbers more than 1.58 billion speakers. Since GLM’s survey encompassed the years 2000 - 2009, the expanded lists included 25 Top Words, and 20 Top Phrases and 20 Top Names.

To see the Top Words of the individual years of the 21st century, go here.

Each List contains the word, phrase or name in numerical order and the year when the word, phrase or name came to prominence. For example, the word ‘quagmire’ is hundreds of years old but it came into renewed prominence in 2004, about a year after the beginning of the Iraq War.

The Top Words of the Decade from 2000 – 2009

Word (Year) Comments

1. Global Warming (2000) Rated highly from Day One of the decade

2. 9/11 (2001) Another inauspicious start to the decade

3. Obama- (2008 )The US President’s name as a ‘root’ word or ‘word stem’

4. Bailout (2008) The Bank Bailout was but Act One of the crisis

5. Evacuee/refugee (2005) After Katrina, refugees became evacuees

6. Derivative (2007) Financial instrument or analytical tool that engendered the Meltdown

7. Google (2007) Founders misspelled actual word ‘googol’

8. Surge (2007) The strategy that effectively ended the Iraq War

9. Chinglish (2005) The Chinese-English Hybrid language growing larger as Chinese influence expands

10. Tsunami (2004) Southeast Asian Tsunami took 250,000 lives

11. H1N1 (2009) More commonly known as Swine Flu

12. Subprime ( 2007) Subprime mortgages were another bubble to burst

13. dot.com (2000) The Dot.com bubble engendered no lifelines, no bailouts

14. Y2K ( 2000) The Year 2000:  all computers would turn to pumpkins at the strike of midnight

15. Misunderestimate (2002) One of the first and most enduring of Bushisms

16. Chad ( 2000) Those Florida voter punch card fragments that the presidency would turn aupon

17. Twitter (2008 ) A quarter of a billion references on Google

18. WMD (2002) Iraq’s Weapons of Mass Destruction

19. Blog (2003) First called ‘web logs’ which contracted into blogs

20. Texting (2004) Sending 140 character text messages over cell phones

21. Slumdog (2008) Child inhabitants of Mumba’s slums

22. Sustainable (2006) The key to ‘Green’ living where natural resources are never depleted

23. Brokeback (2004)   New term for ‘gay’ from he Hollywood film ‘Brokeback Mountain’

24. Quagmire (2004) Would Iraq War end up like Vietnam, another ‘quagmire’?

25. Truthiness (2006) Steven Colbert’s addition to the language appears to be a keeper

The Top Phrases of the Decade from 2000 – 2009

Word (Year) Comments

1. Climate Change (2000) Green words in every form   dominant the decade

2. Financial Tsunami (2008) One quarter of the world’s wealth vanishes seemingly overnight

3. Ground Zero (2001) Site of 9/11terrorist attack in New York City

4. War on Terror (2001)  Bush administration’s response to 9/11

5. Weapons of Mass Destruction (2003)  Bush’s WMDs never found in Iraq or the Syrian desert

6. Swine Flu (2008) H1N1, please, so as not to offend the pork industry or religious sensitivities!

7. “Let’s Roll!” (2001)  Todd Beamer’s last words before Flight 93 crashed into the PA countryside

8. Red State/Blue State (2004) Republican or Democratic control of states

9. Carbon footprint (2007) How much CO² does an activity produce?

10. Shock-and-awe (2003) Initial strategy of Iraq War

11. Ponzi Scheme (2009) Madoff’s strategy reaped billions & heartache

12. Category Four (2005) Force of Hurricane Katrina hitting New Orleans’ seawalls and levies

13. King of Pop (2000)  Elvis was the King, MJ the King (of Pop)

14. “Stay the Course” (2004) Dubya’s off-stated guidance for Iraq War

15. “Yes, we can! (2008)   Obama’s winning campaign slogan

16.Jai Ho!” (2008)  Shout of joy from ‘Slumdog Millionaire’

17. “Out of the Mainstream” (2003) Complaint about any opposition’s political platform

18. Cloud computing (2007)  Using the Internet as a large computational device

19. Threat Fatigue (2004)   One too many terrorist threat alerts

20. Same-sex marriage (2003) Marriage of gay couples

The Top Names of the Decade from 2000 – 2009

Name (Year) Comment

1. Hereos (2001)   Emergency responders who rushed into the Towers

2. bin Laden (2001) His Capture still top of mind for US Military

3. Ground Zero (2001) NY Times still will not capitalize the site as a formal name

4. Dubya (2000) George W. Bush, US President No. 43

5. The Clintons (Hillary & Bill) (2000) Looming on political landscape, though not as large

6. John Paul II (2000)   Largest funeral in TV history attested to power

7. Obama (2008) Making an impact as the decade ends

8. Taliban (2000)   Still the source of Afghan insurgency

9. Katrina (2004) Hurricane whose destruction of New Orleans is seared into minds around globe

10. Tiger Woods (2000) Top golfer earned about $1 Billion this decade

11. iPhone (2007)   First product on this list

12. Paul Hewson (Bono) (2000) U2 Front man, NY Times Columnist, catalyst for African relief

13. Michael Jackson (2000) The King of Pop

14. Al Gore (2000) Nobel Prize winner, US Vice President, Climate Change purveyor

15. Saddham Hussein (2000) Iraqi dictator captured while hiding in a ‘spider hole’

16. Enron (2001)   Seems like another era since this giant fell

17. Bollywood (2000)   Mumbai’s answer to Hollywood

18. Facebook (2007) Another ubiquitous software product

19. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (2005) Iranian president since 2005

20. Vladimir Putin (2000) Russian leader since 2000

The analysis was completed on November 16th using GLM’s Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI), the proprietary algorithm that tracks words and phrases in the media and on the Internet, now including blogs and social media (such as Twitter). The words are tracked in relation to frequency, contextual usage and appearance in global media outlets, factoring in long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum and velocity.

-30-30-30-

“Obama-” as a Top Word of 2008

Austin, TX December 5 2008 – In an election cycle known for its many twists and turns, another unexpected result pops up in calculating the Top Words of 2008. According to the analysis performed by the Global Language Monitor’s (www.Languagemonitor.com), the word ‘change’ was the Top Word of 2008, followed by ‘bailout’ and ‘Obamamania’.

“However, it is interesting to note,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of GLM, “that if you included ‘obama-’ as a root word or word stem, Obama- in its many forms (ObamaMania, Obamamentum, Obmanomics, Obamacize, Obamanation, and even O-phoria and Obamalot as a stand-in for JFK’s Camelot, etc.), would have overtaken both change, and bailout for the top spot.

In a year of footnotes, GLM felt it important to add this interesting linguistic twist to the historical record.”

Obama’s oft cited refrain, “Yes, we can!”  was ranked third as Phrase of the Year, following “financial tsunami” and “global warming.”

Barack Obama was ranked the Top Name of the Year, followed by George W. Bush and Michael Phelps, the Olympic 8-time gold medal winner.

CNN Sunday Morning on the Top Words of 2008 (Dec 7, 2008)

Change beats Bailout and Obamamania as top word of 2008

Financial Tsunami is Top Phrase, Barack Obama is Top Name

Austin, TX December 1, 2008 - Change is the Top Word,  Financial Tsunami is Top Phrase, and Barack Obama is Top Name atop the Global Language Monitor’s (www.Languagemonitor.com) annual global survey of the English language.

The estimated number of words in the English language stands at 998,751, just 1,249 from the million-word mark.

“Global English has been driven by three notable events during the course of 2008:  The US Presidential Election, the Financial Tsunami, and the Beijing Olympics.” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor. For 2008 our words were culled from throughout the English-speaking world which now numbers some 1.58 billion speakers and includes such diverse cultures as India, China, Philippines, and the EuroZone.

The analysis was completed using GLM’s Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI), the proprietary algorithm that tracks words and phrases in the media and on the Internet. The words are tracked in relation to frequency, contextual usage and appearance in global media outlets, factoring in long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum and velocity.

The top words for 2007 were all ‘green’ oriented:  Hybrid was the Top Word, the Top Phrase was Climate Change, and the Top Name was Al Gore.(who won the Nobel Prize) for his efforts on Global Warming through ‘An Inconvenient Truth’. In an odd twist of history, Gore also won an academy award for the film.

The Top Word for 2006 were ’sustainable,’ the Top Phrase was ‘Stay the Course’ (President Bush repeatedly describing his Iraq Strategy), and the Top Name was Dafur.

The Top Ten Words of 2008

  1. Change – The top political buzzword of the 2008 US Presidential campaign.
  2. Bailout – Would have been higher but was not in the media until Mid-September.
  3. Obamamania – Describing the worldwide reaction to Barack Obama’s campaign and subsequent victory in the US presidential race.
  4. Greenwashing – Repositioning a product to stress its Earth-friendly attributes.
  5. Surge – Military and political strategy often cited as reducing violence in Iraq.
  6. Derivative – Exotic financial instruments used to cleverly package junk-grade debt.
  7. Subprime – Mortgages that were packaged as derivatives.
  8. Foreclosure – The end-result of the sub-prime mess.
  9. Phelpsian:  New word coined to describe the Phelpsian Pheat of winning eight gold medals at the Beijing Olympics.
  10. Chinglish – The often amusing Chinese/English language hybrid that Beijing tried to stamp out before the Olympics began.

The Top Ten Phrases of 2008

  1. Financial Tsunami – Worldwide financial meltdown ultimately stemming from derivatives used to package subprime mortgages.
  2. Global Warming – The No. 2 buzzword of the US Presidential Campaign.
  3. Yes We Can — Yes, indeed, he could and he did.
  4. Lame Duck – What happens when you wait 2 ½ months from election to inauguration.
  5. Working Class Whites – Apparently, working Class Whites is used as a code word for whites who are working class.
  6. “It is, what it is” – On everyone’s lips this year meaning ‘unfortunately, those are the facts’.
  7. Lip Synching: The fate of Lin Miaoke, the little girl who didn’t sing the song the whole world sings in the Olympics opening ceremony.
  8. Price of oil – Oil was supposed to topping out about now at $200/barrel.
  9. Super Tuesday – When the race for the Democratic nomination was supposed to be decided.
  10. Suddenness Happens – Top Chinglish Phrase from the Beijing Olympics.

The Top Ten Names of 2008

  1. Barack Obama –. President-elect of the United States.
  2. George W. Bush Lame Duck, No. 43, The Decider.
  3. Michael Phelps — The top name of the top televison spectacle of all time (the Beijing Olympics)
  4. Hilary Clinton – She said ‘he can’t win;’ now she is his Secretary of State.
  5. Vladimir Putin – The supreme leader of Russia, whatever his title.
  6. Bono — U2’s front man also known for his efforts to raise awareness about AIDS in African, Third World debt and Unfair Trade practices.
  7. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Iran now claims 5,000 nuclear centrifuges.
  8. Sarah Palin – Governor of Alaska and vice presidential nominee of the Republican party.
  9. John McCain – Soon to be the answer to a trivia question: Mondale, Dole, Dukakis ….
  10. Beyonce – The R&B singer AKA as Sasha Fierce.

The Top Celeb Couple:  Sarkozy and Carla Bruni – Big hit for his policies and her former supermodel status (replacing David Beckham and Posh Spice).

Top Words and Phrases of 2007

‘Hybrid’ bests ‘Surge’ as Top Word

‘Climate Change’ is Top Phrase

‘Al Gore’ is Top Name

Top Smiley is ?-) for ‘pirate’

San Diego, CA and Henderson, NV (December 13, 2007) ‘Hybrid’ is Top Word, ‘Climate Change’ is Top Phrase, and ‘Gore’ is Top Name atop the Global Language Monitor’s annual global survey of the English language. The Top Smiley is ?-) for ‘’pirate’. The most understood word on the planet is the word OK. And the estimated number of words in the English language is 995,115, just 4,884 from the million-word mark.

The analysis was completed using GLM’s Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI), the proprietary algorithm that tracks words and phrases in the media and on the Internet. The words are tracked in relation to frequency, contextual usage and appearance in global media outlets, factoring in long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum and velocity. GLM’s global network of language observers have nominated English-language words throughout the year from the world over.

The idea of planetary peril and impending climatic doom resonated throughout our linguistic analysis, with the various words and phrases garnering hundreds of millions of citations; in the end this narrowly outdistanced the word ‘surge’ that also had a disproportionate impact upon 2007’s linguistic landscape.” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor. For 2007 these words were culled from throughout the English-speaking world which now numbers some 1.35 billion speakers and and now includes such diverse cultures as China, the Philippines, and India.

The Top Ten Words of 2007

1. Hybrid – Actually Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV). Chosen to represent all things green from biodiesel to wearing clothes made of soy, to global warming to living with a zero-carbon footprint. (From the Latin hybrida, a variation of ibrida for “mongrel,” specifically “offspring of a sow and a wild boar,”)

2. Surge - The controversial political and military strategy of winning the war in Iraq

3. Bubble – As in housing bubble, bursting. Also, Credit crunch.

4. Smirting – The new-found art of flirting while being banished outside a building for smoking.

5. Pb – The symbol lead, Atomic No. 82. The culprit in innumerable toy recalls this year.

6. Ideating – Latest in a long line of verbalisms: the descendent of concepting and efforting.

7. Omega-3 (Greek letter omega-3) — Also written as Omega 3; the healthy fatty acid.

8. Cleavage – As in ‘woman of cleavage,’ a touchy campaign subject.

9. Amigoization — Increasing Hispanic influence in California, the Southwest and into the Heartland.

10. Bluetooth – A technology to connect electronic devices by radio waves.

The Top Smiley or Emoticon: ?-) The smiley for ‘pirate’, thanks to the Pirates of the Caribbean.

The Top HollyWORD gone global: Brokeback — GLM’s top HollyWORD of 2006 now recognized by Chinese Ministry of Educations as new word for ‘gay,’ with ideograms for ‘broke’ and ‘back’.

The Top Ten Phrases for 2007

1. Climate change – The warming of the Earth’s atmosphere due to natural cycles (politically sensitive; believed to be primarily outside the control of man)

2. ‘Ho-Ho-Ho’ – Santa’s trademark phrase. In Australia officials are suggesting ‘Ha-Ha-Ha’ because the former may scandalize the children.

3. All-time low – The phrase apparently grafted next to the president’s name in the media.

4. Theory of Everything – Garrett Lisi’s especially simple theory of the Universe that unites all forces and gravity in one elegant structure.

5. Planetary Peril – Al Gore’s trademark phrase to describe the Earth’s current condition.

6. Wristband Wagon – Wearing your heart on your … wrist. Pink against breast cancer, red against third-world poverty, ‘camouflage’ (or yellow as in yellow ribbon) to support the troops,

7. No Noising – Chinese/English hybrid (Chinglish) for ‘quiet please!’

8. Fade to black – From the Soprano’s series finale to the Hollywood writers’ strike

9. Fossil Fuels – The enemy of the Greens: Coal, Oil, and Natural Gas (anything hydrocarbon-based).

10. Fashion tribe: Persons who follow a particular fashion with a tribe-like mindset: Examples include EMO, Hip-hop or Goth.

The Top Ten Names for 2007

1. Al Gore – Conveniently, doesn’t need the presidency to top the list.

2. The Decider — George W. Bush, still president after all these years.

3. Bono – U2’s front man out in front on Third World debt relief.

4. Obama & Hillary — Barack’s name now qualifies as a buzzword; quite unusual, though Hil comes close.

5. Hugo Chavez – The Gadfly of Latin America

6. Vladimir Putin — The supreme leader (President, Prime Minister, whatever) of the Russian Federation. 7. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad — Iranian President suggests moving Israel to Europe.

8. Pope Benedict XVI — continues to engage Muslim leadership in thoughtful discussions.

9. David Beckham and Posh Spice – Yet another ‘new’ type of Hollywood power couple.

10. Fidel Castro – The head one of the few remaining Communist states lives yet another year.

The Most Understood Word on the Planet: O.K.

Popularized by US President (1837 -1841) Martin Van Buren’s nickname, Old Kinderhook, from his birthplace in New York State. His re-election slogan was ‘Martin Van Buren is O.K’.

The Number of Words in the English Language: 995,116

Estimated as of Monday, December 10, 2007 11:16 am Pacific

The Top Words of 2006

‘Sustainable’ is Top Word

‘Stay the Course’ is Top Catchphrase

‘Darfur’ is Top Name, and

Yoof Speak’ is Top Youth Speak

San Diego, California (January 1, 2007) ‘Sustainable’ is Top Word, ‘Stay the Course’ is Top Catchphrase, ‘Darfur’ is the Top Name, and ‘Yoof Speak’ is Top Youth Speak atop the Global Laanguage Monitor’s Annual List . ‘Sustainable,’ ‘Stay the Course,’ and ‘Darfur’ were chosen as the Top Word, Phrase, and Name of the year by the Global Language Monitor (www.LanguageMonitor.com) in its annual global survey.

In 2006 the English Language grew ever more global with some 1,300,000,000 speakers using it as their first, second, business, or technical tongue. Additionally, for the first time, we’ve included emoticons and SMS (or text messages) in our lists which signify yet another fascinating trend in the rise of Global English,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor. The 2006 lists include words from culled from around the English-speaking world including India, Singapore, China, Australia, and the US and UK.”

GLM’s staff and a global network of voluntary language observers, have nominated English-language words from the world over.

The Top Ten Words of 2006 with commentary follow.

1. Sustainable – Originally a ‘green’ term has moved into the mainstream meaning ‘self-generating’ as in ‘wind power is a sustainable power supply’. Can apply to populations, marriages, agriculture, economies, and the like. The opposite of ‘disposable’.

2. Infonaut – Those who blithely travel along the ‘infobahn’.

3. Hiki Komori – One million young Japanese men who avoid intense societal pressures by withdrawing into their own rooms (and worlds) rarely venturing outside.

4. Planemo — Planets that didn’t make the cut in 2006 as sustainable planets. Pluto was demoted to a planemo.

5. Netroots — The activists who have transformed the practice of fundraising and getting out the vote – through cyberspace.

6. Londonistan – Nickname for London as its Asian population swells.

7. Brokeback (Mountain)– A cultural phenomenon (Brokeback, Brokedown, etc.) with almost a million references to Brokeback jokes alone on Google.

8. Ethanol – Proxy for all things ‘green’ and energy independence.

9. Corruption – As in ‘Culture of’; analysis of mid-term elections suggests this was the key for the turnover of the House.

10. Chinese (adj.) – All things Chinese currently in ascendance.

The Top Words for 2005 were: 1. Refugee — Though the word was considered politically incorrect in the US, ‘refugees’ were often considered the lucky ones in streaming away from a series of global catastrophes unmatched in recent memory. 2. Tsunami — From the Japanese tsu nami for ‘harbor wave’, few recognized the word before disaster struck on Christmas Day, 2004, but the word subsequently flooded with unprecedented (and sustained) media coverage. 3. Poppa/Papa/Pope — (Italian, Portuguese, English, many others). The death of beloved Pope John Paul II kept the words on the lips of the faithful around the world.

The Top Catchphrases for 2006 with commentary follow.

1. Stay the Course – Declared inoperative as the situation in Iraq slides into the abyss.

2. If I Did it – GLM traced nearly 10,000 news stories about O.J.’s new book within 36 hours of its announcement. The book was almost immediately withdrawn by its publisher.

3. # - ) The ‘emoticon’ way of saying ‘wasted’.

4. Airline Pulp – The Chinglish (Chinese/English Hybrid) way of describing food served aboard an airliner. We think this one is a keeper.

5. Serial Texter – Though rarely used by adults, texting has become one of the predominant methods of communication among the world’s youth, with many texting hundreds of messages a day. You can even subscribe to serialized SMS (short message service) ‘novels’.

6. Global Warming – Eliminate the political controversy and the fact remains that 10,000 years ago New York City was under 5,000 feet of ice.

7. Keeping Parents Clueless – Or KPC: The ‘instant message’ way of telling friends that while parents might be reading over their shoulders, they are nevertheless being kept uniformed.

8. Brokeback Mountain – This movie title became the center of hundreds of late night jokes. Even Dick Chaney was featured on the cover art of the New Yorker with a Brokeback theme.

9. Come and Get it Fast – McDonald’s created this Chinese phrase as a ready translation of ‘fast food’.

10. “You’re going to Hollywood!” – After five years, this phrase from American Idol, is more popular than ever.

The Top Catchphrases for 2005 were: 1. Out of the Mainstream — Used to describe the ideology of any political opponent. 2. Bird Flu/Avian Flu — the H5N1 strain of Flu that resembles that of the 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic where 60 million died. 3. Politically Correct — The Political Correctness Movement arose as a Global Phenomenon in 2005.

The Top Ten Names for 2006 with commentary follow.

1. Darfur – First time a country or region heads the list.

2. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad – Unfettered President of Iran.

3. Bono – Quintessential rock star, front man for the band U2, turned humanitarian.

4. George Bush – Received an old fashioned ‘whuppin’ in the mid-Term elections; still attempting to turn the tide in his last 24 months in office.

5. Kofi Annan – Departing head of the UN, both revered and reviled.

6. Joseph Ratzinger – Pope Benedict XVI turned Muslim heads by quoting a Renaissance scholar with a less than favorable opinion of Islam.

7. Brangelina – Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie as a new type of Hollywood power couple.

8. Saddam Hussein – Hanging marks the end of one of the most brutal dictatorships in recent memory.

9. Fidel Castro – Still lives on as the head of one of the few remaining Communist states, some fifty years after the Cuban Revolution.

10. Hugo Chávez – Expressed less than favorable opinion of President Bush at the UN.

The Top Names for 2005 were: 1. (Acts of) God: The world watches helplessly as a superpower is humbled as one of its great cities (New Orleans) is laid asunder (Hurricane Katrina). 2. Tsunami snuffs out nearly 300,000 lives, and an earthquake takes another 200,000 (Kashmir). A Higher Power, indeed. 3. Katrina: Greek (katharos) for ‘pure’. Before the hurricane, the name was most famously borne by two saints, Empress Catherine the Great of Russia, and three of Henry VIII’s wives.

The Top Ten Global YouthSpeak Words for 2006 with commentary follow.

1. Yoof Speak – Pan-Asian term for YouthSpeak.

2. Ballin’ – Doing well; fine; as in he’s really ballin’ now.

3. Stick Ice – Chinese YouthSpeak for ‘popsicle’ or ice cream cone.

4. ii – Siigniifiies the text messaging style of doubliing the letter ii wherever iit iis found. (Very gee or preppy).

5. Ya-ya papaya – Snooty person (Singlish from Singapore).

6. 1 – From the U2 song One Love. Sign-off to Instant Messages.

7. =^..^= The emoticon representing a kitty.

8. Get up One’s Nose – Irritates, as in ‘He gets up my nose!’ (UK).

9. LMAO – Texting abbreviation for Laughed My Ass Off.

10. Yobbo – An unrefined or loutish youth (Aussie/UK).

The Top Global YouthSpeak Words for 2005 were: 1. Crunk — A Southern variation of hip hop music; also meaning fun or amped. 2. Mang — Variation of man, as in “S’up, mang?” 3. A’ight — All Right, “That girl is nice, she’s a’ight”.

The Most Frequently Spoken Word on the Planet: O.K.

Popularized by US President (1837 -1841) Martin Van Buren’s nickname, Old Kinderhook from his birthplace in New York State. His re-election slogan was ‘Martin Van Buren is O.K’. Didn’t you ever wonder why a simple word can be spelled in capital letters followed by periods? Though the undoubtedly word appeared in earlier variations, this is the event that solidified its position in the language.

The Number of Words in the English Language: 991,833

Estimate Wednesday, December 30, 2006 10:34 PM Pacific.

Total Number of English Speakers: 1,300,000,000

Top Word Lists of 2005

San Diego, California (December 16, 2005. Refugee, Outside the Mainstream, and (Acts of) God were selected as leading the Top Word, Phrase and Name Lists of 2005, released earlier today by the Global Language Monitor in its annual worldwide survey. The Global Language Monitor (GLM) publishes Year 2005 lists regarding: The Top Words, Top Phrases, Top Names, Global Youth Speak, as well as the Top Word Spoken on the Planet.

The Top Words as Viewed from China

2005 was the year we saw a convergence of a number sometimescontradictory language trends: the major global media became more pervasive yet actually less persuasive; the language spoken by the youth of the world is converging at an ever-increasing rate; and the Political Correctness movement become a truly global phenomenon,” said Paul JJ Payack, President of The Global Language Monitor (GLM).

The year has been a vibrant one for language, rife with examples that have been nominated by the GLM’s Language Police, volunteer language observers from the world over.

The Top Ten Words of 2005:

1. Refugee: Though the word was considered politically incorrect in the US, ‘refugees’ were often considered the lucky ones in streaming away from a series of global catastrophes unmatched in recent memory.

2. Tsunami: From the Japanese tsu nami for ‘harbor wave’, few recognized the word before disaster struck on Christmas Day, 2004, but the word subsequently flooded with unprecedented (and sustained) media coverage.

3. Poppa/Papa/Pope: (Italian, Portuguese, English, many others). The death of beloved Pope John Paul II kept the words on the lips of the faithful around the world.

4. Chinglish: The new second language of China from the Chinglish formation: CHINese + EngLISH.

5. H5N1: A looming global pandemic that could dwarf the Bubonic Plague of the Middle Ages (and AIDS) boggles the comtemporary imagination.

6. Recaille: A quick trip around the Romance languages (French jargon, scum; Spanish, rabble or swine; Italian, worthless dregs) illustrates the full freight of the word used to describe youthful French rioters of North African and Muslim descent.

7. Katrina: Name will become synonymous with natural forces responsible for the total and utter descruction of a city.

8. Wiki: Internet buzzword (from the Hawai’ian wiki wiki for ‘quick, quick’) that describes collaboration software where anyone can contribute to the on-going effort.

9. SMS: Short Message Service. The world’s youth sent over a trillion text messages in 2005. Currently being texted are full-length novels, news, private messages and everything in between.

10. Insurgent: Politically neutral term used to describe enemy combatants.

Last year the Top Words words were incivility, Red States/Blue States, and Blogosphere.

The Top Ten Phrases of 2005:

1. Out of the Mainstream: Used to describe the ideology of any political opponent.

2. Bird Flu/Avian Flu: the H5N1 strain of Flu that resembles that of the 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic where 60 million died.

3. Politically Correct: Emerges as a worldwide phenomenon.

4. North/South Divide: In the US it might be Red States and Blue States but globally the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ are divided by a geographical if not psychological boundary.

5. Purple Finger/Thumb: The badge of honor worn by Iraqi voters proving that they voted in their ground-breaking elections.

6. Climate Change: (Or Global Warming.) No matter what your political persuasion, the fact remains that New York City was under 5,000 feet of ice some 20,000 years ago.

7. String Theory: The idea that the universe is actually constructed of 11-dimensional, pulsating planes of existence.

8. The Golden Quatrilateral: India’s new superhighway system that links the key cities of the Subcontinent.

9. Jumping the Couch: Apparently losing complete emotional control; made popular by the escapades of Tom Cruise on the Oprah television show.

10. Deferred Success: The idea introduced in the UK that there is no such thing as failure, only deferred success.

Last year the Top Phrases were Red States/Blue States, Moral Values, and Two Americas.

The Top Ten Names of 2005:

1. (Acts of) God: The world watches helplessly as a superpower is humbled as one of its great cities (New Orleans) is laid asunder (Hurricane Katrina).

2. Tsunami snuffs out nearly 300,000 lives, and an earthquake takes another 200,000 (Kashmir). A Higher Power, indeed.

3. Katrina: Greek (katharos) for ‘pure’. Before the hurricane, the name was most famously borne by two saints, Empress Catherine the Great of Russia, and three of Henry VIII’s wives.

4. John Paul II: The death of beloved Pope John Paul II kept his name on the lips of the faithful around the world.

5. Wen Jiabao: Premier of the People’s Republic of China since March 2003; leading perhaps the largest economic transformation in history.

6. Saddham Hussein: Should re-read Karl Marx — the first time is history, the second but farce.

7. Dubya: Every more ‘weeble-like’: Dubya wobbles but he won’t fall down.

8. Oprah: Now a global phenomenon with an ever-expanding media (and charitable) empire.

9. Shakira: The Columbian songstress is captivating ever wider circles.

10. John Roberts: New Chief Justice of the American Supreme Court.

Bonus: Mahmud Ahmadi-nejad: President of Iran since August 2005; he has recently suggest that the Jewish Homeland be moved to Europe (or Alaska).

Last year the Top Names were Dubya Rove (W. and Karl Rove), Mel (Gibson) (Michael) Moore, and Saddam Hussein.

Top Global Musical Terms:

1. Reggaeton (pronounced Reggae-TONE): Part Latin, part hip hop, with liberal helpings of Dancehall and Caribbean music thrown in for good measure. Several Reggaeton radio staples this year made their way into the public consciousness.

2. Baile (pronounced Bye-Lay) Funk: Brazilian dance music that has gained popularity worldwide, championed by such trend-setters as Norman Cook in the UK, and Philadelphia DJ Diplo.

3. Podcast: New broadcast medium; think of it as Tivo for your radio. Even your nighbor is podcasting.

4: Rootkit: Thanks to an overzealous copy-protection scheme, thousands of music fans who tried to encode Sony artists’ music onto their computer unwittingly installing a malicious piece of code that exposed their computers to attack. After intense media scrutiny and public outcry, Sony recalled the CD’s from shelves and offered free downloads of the affected albums.

5. Live 8: Millions of people tuned in to the sequel to Sir Bob Geldoff’s1985 Live Aid benefit, this time to raise awareness of poverty and Third World debt and to pressure countries in the G8 to do something about it.

The Top Ten Global YouthSpeak Words:

1. Crunk: A Southern variation of hip hop music; also meaning fun or amped.

2. Mang: Variation of man, as in “S’up, mang?”

3. A’ight: All Right, “That girl is nice, she’s a’ight”

4. Mad: A lot; “She has mad money”

5. Props: Cheers, as in “He gets mad props!”

6. Bizznizzle: This term for” business” is part of the Snoop Dogg/Sean John-inspired lexicon, as in “None of your bizznizzle!’

7. Fully: In Australia an intensive, as in ‘fully sick’.

8. Fundoo: In India, Hindi for cool

9. Brill! From the UK, the shortened form of brilliant!

10. “s’up”: Another in an apparently endless number of Whazzup? permutations.

Southern California YouthSpeak Bonus: Morphing any single syllable word into 3, 4 or even 5 syllables.

Last year the Top YouthSpeak terms were: Word, Peace (or Peace out), and Proper.

The Most Recognized Word on the Planet: O.K.

(Popularized by US President (1837 -1841) Martin Van Buren’s nickname, Old Kinderhook from his birthplace in New York State. His re-election slogan was ‘Martin Van Buren is O.K’. Didn’t you ever wonder why a simple word can be spelled in capital letters followed by periods? Though the undoubtedly word appeared earlier, this is the event that solidified its position in the language.)