You might be ready to blackout 2020 completely but it’s not done with us yet. There are some words and phrases that will be sticking with us for years to come. Here’s a few to expect to hear for longer than you’ll probably care to.
- COVID. After months of people calling it all sorts of names, it appears the COVID has won the competition for the most popular shorthand. Nobody had ever heard the word over a year ago but now it’s on the tips of everyone’s tongue. Kind of like Olivia Rodrigo. Linguist Ben Zimmer from the American Dialect Society believes out of all the new words that popped up in the past year that COVID will have the longest staying power.
- DOOMSCROLLING. Aka spending a long period of time looking at upsetting news... which was of course 99.9% of all news that came out last year. Zimmer says that this is “the type of word that people latch onto very quickly, and they recognize it’s something in their own behavior [that] has a name.” And it’s not going away anytime soon.
- SUPERSPREADER. Pre-2020 you might think this was the worst Marvel movie you’ve ever heard of but here in 2021 we all know what it means and we all hope not to be in the news stories talking about them. For now, this term is sticking around, but hopefully, as cases fall and vaccines get in arms, it will become a distant memory.