Macquarie Dictionary Blog
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Posted on 2 December 2019
Macquarie shortlist of words of the year | Arts and Literature
There are a whopping fifteen categories in the Macquarie Dictionary Word of the Year longlist (you can check the full list out here). Each of these categories is comprised of five words, which is a lot of new content and new words to learn! These are whittled down by our Committee to just fifteen words that you can choose from in the People's Choice Word of the Year 2019. Before you vote, have a look at this highlight of just one of those categories. Take a look at what the words mean, where they come from and take a minute to tell us what you think of them. The arts and literature are a huge source of new words, for example with writers creating new coinages (like Lewis Carroll to throw it back a ways) that get picked up for wider use. This year, the words have origins from fan fiction to adult entertainment to (gasp!) government. One of these words is silkpunk, which is modelled on cyberpunk, and joins a host of other -punk genres such as biopunk, solarpunk and steampunk. Another word on the list is sensitivity message, which has a similar definition to trigger warning. Trigger warning went in to the Macquarie Dictionary in 2015 and was part of the Word of the Year shortlist for 2015. silkpunk noun a subgenre of science fiction which draws on Asian history and culture for setting and aesthetic. [SILK (in reference to the SILK ROAD) + PUNK, modelled on CYBERPUNK] Prepare yourself for The Ascent to Godhood, the fourth book in JY Yang's silkpunk Tensorate series, a wide-ranging, imaginative, engaging playground that the New York Times lauded as "joyously wild." www.angusrobertson.com.au I’m not sure how to describe this book. Others have described it as silkpunk (it’s not), Asian fantasy (kind of but not really), or some sort of epic thingy (that’s not written in the style of an epic at all). www.amazon.com.au sensitivity message noun a message appearing on a website, in a publication, etc., warning the reader of possibly culturally sensitive content, such as images of deceased persons; used especially in material relating to Indigenous peoples. Also, sensitivity notice. Sensitivity Message: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander material may be culturally sensitive for some individuals and communities. slq.qld.gov.au Sensitivity Message - PLEASE READ THIS IMPORTANT INFORMATIONIt is a condition of use of the Pathways website and AIATSIS catalogue that users ensure that any disclosure of the information contained in the website or the catalogue is consistent with the views and sensitivities of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. AIATSIS There are three other words that form part of the Arts & Literature category for Word of the Year. We have Mary Sue, ethical porn and beta reader to round out the group. You can find the definitions for these words as well as our longlist on our Word of the Year page. The shortlisted word from this category for 2019 is of course, silkpunk. You can find more information on the shortlist and vote here.
Posted on 2 December 2019
Macquarie shortlist of words of the year | Colloquial
There are a fifteen categories in the Macquarie Dictionary Word of the Year longlist (you can check the full list out here). Each of these categories is comprised of five words, that's a lot of words to bulk up your vocabulary! The list is then whittled down to just fifteen words that you can choose from in the People's Choice Word of the Year 2019. Before you vote, take a look at the five words that made it through our Comittee's rigorous selection process. Colloquialisms provide a rich source of new and interesting words. These words are often slang words originating from popular culture that become ubiquitous throughout the year, such as the 2017 People's Choice winner framily. One of the contenders on this year's list is JOMO, or joy at missing out, the opposite of the dreaded FOMO or fear of missing out. Hangxiety is another word on the list. A portmanteau of hangover and anxiety, you can imagine the sort of feeling that might accompany this word! JOMO noun Colloquial a peaceful and appreciative state of mind induced by choosing not to participate in some activity. [j(oy) o(f) m(issing) o(ut), modelled on FOMO] In 2019 we want to ditch the concept of FOMO – fear of missing out. FOMO is JOMO’s evil twin. It makes us do things purely because we feel like we might miss out on something good if we don’t. www.new-leaf.com.au But you know what? All those yeses meant I missed out on something altogether more important: time for myself. And it turns out I’m not the only one transitioning from an anxious obsession with FOMO into a love of JOMO. www.heraldsun.com.au hangxiety noun Colloquial (humorous) a feeling of anxiousness, worry, guilt, etc., experienced the morning after excessive consumption of alcohol. [blend of HANGOVER and ANXIETY] When you do have hangxiety, what do you do to get you through those hours of hell? Beyond Blue forum Don't be that person at the party. You know the one we're talking about. Have fun, with no regrets or hangxiety the next day. www.eventbrite.com.au The remaining three words that make up the colloquial category for the Word of the Year are edgelord, thicc and silver tsunami. You can find the definitions for these words as well as our longlist on our Word of the Year page. The shortlisted word from this category for 2019 is of course, thicc. This word was also selected by our Committee as one of our three Honourable Mentions, with the illustrious company of eco-anxiety and ngangkari. You can find more information on the shortlist and vote here.
Posted on 2 December 2019
Macquarie shortlist of words of the year | Environment
The 2019 Macquarie Dictionary Word of the Year longlist features fifteen categories, each containing five words for a total of seventy-five words (you can check the full list out here). That's a lot of words and definitions to go through! Now our Comittee is in the process of whittling these down to just fifteen words that you can choose from in the People's Choice Word of the Year 2019. Before you vote, have a look at the highlights from the environment category. Environmental words have already claimed the Word of the Year crown in other contests around the world. Neither climate strike nor climate emergency, the respective words of the year for the Collins and Oxford Dictionaries, have made our shortlist. Instead we have passive design, a concept about environmentally friendly building design, and pyrogeography, the study of the distribution of fires, which is highly relevant in the current Australian context of the devastating bushfires. passive design noun a style of architecture which utilises natural energy sources, orientation, insulation, building materials, etc., in such a way as to reduce or eradicate the need for mechanical systems for heating and cooling. A builder who has experience with passive design will know how to incorporate an effective overhang and recommend other methods of shading such as deciduous trees. www.houspect.com.au To support its entry into the Australian housing sector, Ichijo Technological Homes used the concept of passive design as the foundation of its heat recovery ventilation system to achieve over eight stars in the NatHERS rating. www.climatecontrolnews.com.au pyrogeography noun the study of the distribution of fire, its ecological effects, and its relationship with human geography. As bushfires rage across NSW and Queensland, scrutiny has fallen on management practices, with some including Nationals MP Barnaby Joyce blaming the Greens and environmental activists for stymieing hazard reduction burns. Pyrogeography and fire science expert David Bowman says that argument is disingenuous. www.theflindersnews.com.au The pyrogeography synthesis group of TERN’s Australian Centre for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (ACEAS) facility has successfully mapped Australia’s fire regimes, helping contextualise regional approaches to fire management. www.tern.org.au Eco-anxiety, flight shaming and sponge city make up the enviroment category shortlist for 2019. Former Word of the Year finalists in the envionmental category include 2017 Comittee's choice runner-up endling and 2006 category winner water trading, which once again seems relevant in this time of drought. The shortlisted word from this category for 2019 was so difficult to decide that the Committee selected two to go through These words are eco-anxiety and flight shaming. Eco-anxiety has the additional bonus of being one of three Honourable Mentions, alongside the collloquialism, thicc, and a word that has moved into English from the Pitjantjatjara language, ngangkari. You can find more information on the shortlist and vote here.
Posted on 2 December 2019
Macquarie shortlist of words of the year | Internet
There are fifteen categories in the 2019 Macquarie Dictionary Word of the Year longlist (you can check the full list out here). Each category is comprised of five words for a total of seventy-five words that our Committe will whittle down to just fifteen words that you can choose from in the People's Choice Word of the Year 2019. Before you vote, take a look at the highlights from the internet category. The internet is a great and terrifying source of new words. It doesn't take long for words first typed on a message board to make their way into our vocabulary. One of the Word of the Year classics from this category is 2017 Committee's Choice Word of the Year milkshake duck. Honourable mentions also went to noob from 2009, keyboard warrior from 2015, and 2008's lolcat. This year's list features dogfishing, a dating term modelled on catfishing, and cyber flashing, the digital age version of flashing. dogfishing noun Colloquial (on dating sites or apps) the practice adopted by some people, especially men, of using photographs of themselves with a dog that does not belong to them, because it makes them seem more attractive to potential partners. Also, dog fishing. [modelled on catfishing (see CATFISH), from the perceived deception practised] Did you know there are men out there dogfishing us? Today we speak to a dating expert who tells us how some men are borrowing dogs to try and make them seem more attractive online. www.mamamia.com.au To escape the clutches of a dogfisher is simple – ask him about his dog. A few simple questions will save you meeting someone who isn’t who they say they are! www.dare2date.com.au cyber flashing noun the practice of anonymously sending someone an unsolicited sexually explicit or offensive image or video from a digital device, using bluetooth and wi-fi. As it turns out, this type of behaviour already has a name: cyber-flashing. Men no longer have to stand at the corner of a street in a trench coat. Why should they, when they have this kind of data-sharing tool at their disposal, ensuring absolute anonymity in a public space, with access to hundreds of potential victims? tharunka.arc.unsw.edu.au The Cyber Safety Seminar being held at Telethon Speech and Hearing on Wednesday, August 14th from 6:30 – 8:30pm will cover the following topics and more: · How predators are using online platforms to bully and groom young children · The increase in gaming networks and apps such as Fortnite and Tik Tok being used to access increasingly younger children · Where the greatest riskof online grooming is occurring · The marked increase in cyber flashing across WA https://enewsletter.skoolbag.com.au/e65c6c0f Three other words make up the internet category for the 2019 Word of the Year. These are sealioning, influencer and mukbang. You can find the definitions for these words as well as our longlist on our Word of the Year page. The shortlisted word from this category for 2019 is a bit of a dark horse, with the YouTube sensation of mukbang taking the prize. We featured mukbang in our Words to Watch back in April this year. You can find more information on the shortlist and vote here.
Posted on 2 December 2019
Macquarie shortlist of words of the year | Fashion
With an extensive fifteen categories each containing five words, the Macquarie Dictionary Word of the Year longlist can be a lot to take in. These 75 words (you can check the full list out here) are narrowed down by our Committee to fifteen from which you can then vote for in the People's Choice Word of the Year 2019. Before you cast your vote, be sure to read over the highlights from the Fashion category and learn what the words mean and where they come from. Don’t forget to comment and let us know which words you like and what you think! Fashion is an innovative field that sees dozens of new words coined each year. Previous words that have made it to the Fashion shortlist include lumbersexual, onesie and loom band. This year sees a variety of new words and definitions that cover everything from clothing item slang to haircare methods. If you like your wine budget-friendly then you may have heard the term cleanskin, which already appears in the dictionary with a variety of definitions including an unlabelled (and often low cost) wine, an unbranded animal, or a person free from blame. This year, a newly submitted and somewhat controversial definition denotes a person without any tattoos. A regionalism is a word characteristic to a particular town, area or region and this year we've got Tassie tuxedo which comes from (you guessed it) Tasmania! A puffer jacket, particularly one that is black in colour is often jokingly referred to as a Tassie tuxedo. cleanskin noun Colloquial someone without any tattoos. Being a cleanskin probably puts me in the minority, and, if I remember correctly from primary school, a big part of being cool is being different. www.smh.com.au Give the grandparents a heart attack when you rock up for Christmas lunch with kids bearing arms of tatts! These tattoo sleeves are the ultimate in fun for tweens and teens. Plus, cleanskin dads will love them too. www.mumcentral.com.au Tassie tuxedo noun Tasmania Colloquial (humorous) a puffer jacket, especially one black in colour.Also, Tasmanian tuxedo. Don your Tassie Tuxedo and come down to the Hobart Brewing Company to explore these chilly topics on a chilly July night with Zanna Chase of IMAS. www.inspiringtas.org.au This year I'm asking for not only donations to my cause but I challenge you to join me sleeping out! Grab your Tassie Tuxedo and brave the cold for just one night for a good cause. Go Fund Me page 2014 Rounding out the Fashion category are the words no poo, textile beach and dadcore. You can find the definitions for these words as well as our longlist on our Word of the Year page. The shortlisted word from this category for 2019 is cleanskin. We featured cleanskin in our Words to Watch back in July this year. You can find more information on the shortlist and vote here.
Posted on 2 December 2019
Macquarie shortlist of words of the year | Social Interest
With a total of 75 words spanning fifteen categories, the Macquarie Dictionary Word of the Year longlist (you can check the full list out here) can be a lot to take in! To make choosing the People's Choice Word of the Year 2019 easier, our Committee narrows the longlist down to just fifteen words which are then open to the public to vote on. Take a look at the highlights from one of the categories, Social Interest. Learn what these new words mean and where they come from and let us know what you think of them by commenting below. If you consider yourself up-to-date on the latest social issues and trends, then you’ve probably heard of at least one or two of the words from the Social Interest category. This category covers everything from modern culture to political and socio-economic issues. Being mindful of what you do and what you say has never been more important with cancel culture upon us. The last few years have seen many public figures being ‘cancelled’, that is, effectively becoming a social pariah and losing public support due to an indiscretion or offensive behaviour, usually in the form of an action or comment. Do you know which side of the latte line you fall on? A latte line is an imaginary line that marks a socio-economic and cultural division. This is also sometimes referred to as a quinoa curtain. cancel culture noun the attitudes within a community which call for or bring about the withdrawal of support from a public figure, such as cancellation of an acting role, a ban on playing an artist's music, removal from social media, etc., usually in response to an accusation of a socially unacceptable action or comment. Also, call-out culture, outrage culture Nick Cave has addressed the current state of rock’n’roll in a lengthy and poetic statement about cancel culture. themusic.com.au In the era of cancel culture, retailers need to understand the reasons when things go wrong, and how dealing with a poor customer experience via exceptional customer service can protect, and even enhance, brand reputation and the value this can deliver. retailbiz.com.au latte line noun Colloquial an imaginary line supposedly marking a socio-economic and cultural division, with people living on one side having greater access to jobs, infrastructure, prosperity, etc., and those on the other side of the line as being disadvantaged. Also, quinoa curtain. Largely spanning Sydney’s north-eastern suburbs, the schools above the Latte Line are responsible for producing the bulk of the highest HSC results, when compared with the areas below the Latte Line in the southwest. educationtoday.com.au Using Melbourne's iconic The Age Good Food Guide (GFG) as an indicator of social change, KPMG has established that in 1999 there was one GFG restaurant in the inner west. The 2011 edition shows 10. Melbourne's Latte Line has pushed west of the Yarra and only stops at Rosamond Road, Maribyrnong. vu.edu.au Also making up the Social Interest category are unschooling, period poverty and welcome wall. You can find the definitions for these words as well as our longlist on our Word of the Year page. The shortlisted word from this category for 2019 is also the 2019 Macquarie Dictionary Word of the Year! Cancel culture took out the main prize, which you can find more information about and vote on the People's Choice here.
Posted on 2 December 2019
Macquarie shortlist of words of the year | Eating and Drinking
The Macquarie Dictionary Word of the Year longlist is made up of 75 words (you can check them out here), with five words in each of the fifteen categories. Our Committee whittles these down to just fifteen words to create the shortlist. From the shortlist, you can vote to help decide which word becomes the People's Choice Word of the Year 2019. Before making the decision on which words get your vote, read over the highlights from the Eating and Drinking category to learn the definitions and origins of our picks for 2019. We would love to hear your thoughts, so drop a comment below and tell us what you think of these new words. Love it or hate it (or maybe you’ve never ate it!), nevertheless the addition of cheese slaw to the Macquarie Dictionary took social media by storm, with the people of Broken Hill vehemently defending and exalting their towns beloved invention. This culinary wonder is a salad made up of grated carrot, grated cheese and mayonnaise. You may have heard of a babycino but what about a puppuccino? Dog-friendly cafes have started serving up this speciality drink so that dogs can happily join their owners for a social brunch. Sound like a bad idea? Don’t worry, puppuccinos are made using lactose-free milk to keep pup happy and healthy. cheese slaw noun 1. coleslaw to which grated cheese has been added. 2. Broken Hill a salad of grated carrot, grated cheese, and mayonnaise. Also, cheeseslaw. [modelled on COLESLAW] Don’t leave Broken Hill without trying the chicken and cheese slaw focaccia from Café Lana’s (198 Argent St). www.brokenhillcottages.com.au "So if you're looking from a health and weight point of view of eating salads to maybe lose weight or maintain weight, cheese slaw's maybe not the best salad to be going for." www.abc.net.au puppuccino noun Colloquial a drink for dogs served in dog-friendly cafes, etc., usually consisting of lactose-free milk. Also, puppaccino. [blend of PUP and CAPPUCCINO] Dinesh said people can expect to see more dog owners treating their pets when they pick up their coffee fix. “It’s more popular in Europe than Australia right now but we are seeing more pet owners ordering puppuccinos,” he said. www.bartercard.com.au Perth's pooches have been lining up for a puppuccino at micro-cafe Boo Espresso. www.dailytelegraph.com.au Other words in the Eating and Drinking category this year include food fraud, ruby chocolate and urban cooking. You can find the definitions for these words as well as our longlist on our Word of the Year page. The shortlisted word from this category for 2019 is cheese slaw. And don't forget to vote for the People's Choice for Word of the Year 2019 and comment below!
Posted on 12 November 2019
Which words won the Premier's Spelling Bee?
Ever year in New South Wales, the Premier's Spelling Bee gathers students from all over the state to compete in one of the biggest spelling competitions in the state. Macquarie Dictionary is proud to sponsor this event once again and we so thrilled to be able to see these bright young people compete in both the junior and senior competitions. Run by the NSW Department of Education, who have posted photos of the winners on Facebook, this year, the winner for the senior competition was River from Yamba Public School. His winning word was proscenium, which means 'the front part of the stage, especially the area in front of the curtain'. A difficult word for anybody! And in the junior competition, the winner was Hannah from Hornsby South Public School with the word vigilante, which means 'a private citizen who, usually as one of a group of such citizens, assumes the role of guardian of society in maintaining law and order, punishing wrongdoers, etc.' Congratulations to everyone who took part in the Premier's Spelling Bee this year and especially to the two winners. Each winner and runner-up received a free school-wide 12-month subscription to the Macquarie Dictionary and Thesaurus Online, as well as a pack of books including the Macquarie Dictionary Seventh Edition, a selection of Macquarie Spelling Workbooks and some fiction titles from Pan Macmillan such as Rogue by A.J. Betts, The Quest Diaries of Max Crack by Jules Faber and The New Kid series by James O'Loghlin! Have a look at some of the previous Premier's Spelling Bees here.
Posted on 18 September 2018
Plants that can transform: have you tried jackfruit, Irish moss or seitan?
With the rise of faux meat and vegan substitutes, we look at the plants behind these creations, find out more about their origins and what food they can be transformed into. Have you ever tried pulled jackfruit? Have you ever used aquafaba in baking? Do you sprinkle nutritional yeast on your food? Read more...
Posted on 23 February 2018
The language of Dickens
In my years as a dictionary editor I have found that one thing that stirs the imagination of an audience and puts a certain light in their eyes is the notion that they might make up a word that gets into the dictionary. I think that what stirs them is the desire to make their mark and leave it for posterity. Read more...
Posted on 6 December 2017
Aussie collective nouns - winners!
We asked for Aussie collective nouns and you delivered! Now it's time to announce our favourite ten. Congratulations to everyone who won and thank to for entering. It was a lot of fun to see what we could all come up with. Find out the top ten here...
Posted on 15 November 2017
Attending the NSW Premier's Spelling Bee 2017
This year over 150,000 students from across New South Wales competed in the Premier’s Spelling Bee 2017, the largest Spelling Bee in the country. As sponsors of the event, Macquarie Dictionary was there to witness the intelligent junior and senior students spell everything from sleuth to thermodynamics to sauerkraut. Read more...