Macquarie Dictionary announces its words of the year for 2020 – so you know what cottagecore and sky puppy mean?
- Macquarie Dictionary has named ‘Doomscrolling’ the most important word for 2020
- The word refers to scrolling through endless bad news
- Australia’s top word makers have also created a separate category for COVID-19 words
- The top word in this category was ‘rona’, Australian slang for ‘coronavirus’
The Macquarie Dictionary has named ‘Doomscrolling’ the most important word for 2020 after a year dominated by wildfires, floods and the global pandemic.
A committee of some of Australia’s top word-makers chose the phrase, which is defined as ‘the habit of continuing to read news feeds online or on social media, despite the news being predominantly negative and often disturbing’.
The year was so dominated by the pandemic that they also created a separate category for words specific to COVID-19.
In that category, the word ‘Rona’ was voted number one.
Macquarie Dictionary has named ‘Doomscrolling’ the most important word for 2020 after a year dominated by forest fires, floods and the pandemic (stock image)
Doom scrolling is defined as ‘the practice of continuing to read news feeds online or on social media despite the fact that the news is predominantly negative and often disturbing’
The term is Australian slang for ‘coronavirus’.
A total of 75 words were shortlisted before the best words were carefully selected and released to the public.
Honorable mentions in the COVID-19 category included covidiot and COVID normal.
According to the Macquarie Dictionary, “a covidiot is a person who refuses to take health advice to stop the spread of COVID-19.”
This includes, but is not limited to, failure to observe social distance and purchasing large quantities of items such as toilet paper.
A very separate category has been created for specific words from COVID-19, with ‘rona’ voted first (photo: a woman cycles along St Kilda in Melbourne wearing a face mask during the pandemic)
The term is Australian slang for ‘coronavirus’, a shortened version of the name of the disease that dominated the headlines in 2020
“COVID normal” refers to a way of life in which a community takes precautions against the transmission of COVID-19 as a natural part of everyday life.
Macquarie Dictionary gave the word ‘Karen’ an honorable mention for the 2020 word of the year
On the general vocabulary list, “Karen” and “pyrocumulonimbus” were selected as honorable mentions.
The first refers to a middle-class white woman, usually from Generation X, who has a righteous, condescending and often racist attitude.
A controversial term, but a big one in 2020, from Bunnings shops to the walking trails of St Kilda. The lack of a male equivalent points to the sexist nature of the word – there are certainly plenty of legitimate male versions about it, ” the committee said.
Pyrocumulonimbus became popular during Australia’s devastating black summer fires and refers to a cloud that forms over a source of intense heat, such as a forest fire or volcanic eruption.
Other words to make the cut were ‘cottagecore’, which refers to a rustic or old-fashioned lifestyle with pastimes such as baking and gardening.
In the COVID-19 category, honorable mentions included covidiot and COVID normal (photo: beachgoers walk along Bondi Beach on Nov. 28)
According to the Macquarie Dictionary, a ‘covidiot is a person who refuses to take health advice to stop the spread of COVID-19’
‘Quarantini’ merges the word ‘quarantine’ and martini to refer to ‘a mixed alcoholic drink made at home in a time of forced social isolation’.
Some of the more unusual additions to this year’s list included “sky puppy,” which refers to a bat or other flying mammal, and “bonk ban,” a government policy that prohibits employees from having sexual relations with one another.
‘Contact tracking’, ‘elbow bump’, ‘social distance’, ‘WFH’ and ‘iso’ were some of the more obvious additions to Macquarie Dictionary’s 2020 shortlist.
The People’s Choice Word of the Year will be announced on December 8.
The full list of words and their definitions is available on it Macquarie Dictionary website.
Other words to make the cut included ‘Cottagecore’, an aesthetic that grew out of the romance of agricultural life, including baking and gardening (stock image of a woman baking)
The word became part of Australia’s vocabulary after the pandemic drove hordes to the kitchen and garden to engage in healthy hobbies when COVID-19 took over
MACQUARIE DICTIONARY OF THE YEAR SHORT LIST 2020
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