Now Accepting Nominations for 2022 Word of the Year

The New Words Committee of the American Dialect Society is now accepting Word of the Year nominations for 2022. Nominations can be submitted via Google Forms here. Please submit your nominations by 5 pm ET on Wed., Dec. 28.

Since 1990, the society has selected words of the year to highlight language change, to bring a few aspects of the study of linguistics to the public’s attention, and to have a little bit of fun. The lighthearted vote is held each year at the time of the society’s annual conference.

This year’s Word of the Year vote will be held at the Hyatt Regency Denver at the Colorado Convention Center in conjunction with the 2023 meetings of the ADS and the Linguistic Society of America. All are welcome to attend the in-person proceedings: a nominating session on Thursday, Jan. 5 (at 6:15-7:15 pm MST in Centennial A) and the final vote on Friday, Jan. 6 (at 5:30-7 pm MST in Centennial E). LSA virtual attendees will also be able to join a livestream and chat.

Some guidelines for making nominations:

  • For the sake of the vote, “word” is broadly defined to include multiword phrases, compounds, and idiomatic expressions that behave like single lexical items.
  • Ideal Word of the Year nominations are words which demonstrate widespread usage by a large number of people, in a variety of contexts and situations, and/or which reflect important events, people, places, ideas, or preoccupations of English-speakers in North America in 2022.
  • Nominated words do not have to be absolutely brand new but they should have risen to prominence or reached some kind of peak of popularity in 2022.

For a list of all past Word of the Year nominees and winners in various categories, click here.