Friday 31 May 2013

Buzz Words of 2013, First Instalment

onesie (around 2012 but now everywhere in tones of horror)

(Do you trust the BBC? Do we trust teachers? Can teachers teach if they don’t feel trusted?)

brunt annoyingly overused week of Jan 1. (What is a brunt?)

storyteller Something to do with selling and marketing, rather than Hansel and Gretel. "At 25, I was hired as a storyteller and media consultant for xxxx, exploring new ways to use narrative to share knowledge within the organisation." (Guardian 2013-01-12) I teach you to use storytelling to change & improve every aspect of your business or nonprofit. Author, Storyteller. Hard-core how-to-do-storytelling coach.

link bait

man up

the Twitter, the Facebook, the Internets, the ebay, the bbc iplayer, the Jesus
Seems to be over Jan.

learnings "
We’ve taken some learnings from our colleagues in Oslo." Words fail.

social graph And Tweeters are already promising to teach you how to use your “social graph” to make money – just give them lots of yours. (Jan 2013) Social graphs seem to have vanished, June 2013.

Are cupcakes over?
In the snow, people are using the words “brave” (as a verb), “struggle” and “effort”. Also “wimp” and “we never closed”.

Vogue for long, cutesy book titles like: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature Is Almost Certainly False (Are they modelled on the titles of Friends episodes? Or winners of the Frankfurt Book Fair bad title award?)

predatory pricing (offering new customers amazing deals)


scare quotes
(sharp rise from 80s)

pfft! (On Twitter)

asymmetrical warfare
KLAXON (Why when no one has heard a klaxon since 1935?)

heady People are using it to mean almost anything.

stew of (emotions etc) Appears 80s, peaks 1995, gone again May.

gözleme February

People using “panic” to mean “broadcast weather warnings” or even “talk about snow”. “Chaos” means “traffic disruption” as usual.

This is about as great of a eureka moment as you can have as a scientist. (Americanism)

Quite young people are talking about hipflasks.

Panic also means “reporting a serious fox attack on a child”.

selfie: photo of yourself, taken by yourself

third time’s the charm: Americanism. Why aren't pedants objecting?

People are now saying that Twitter parody accounts are lame. (They always were, apart from @reelmolesworth and his pals.)

curate (v)
monster for “turn into a monster figure”

Pecha Kucha: mini-presentation

blue-rinse brigade to mean “women with white hair”

panic: used to mean “schools closing” (it’s snowing again)

cis (cis-gender, cis-sexism etc) Goes with intersectionality.

high moral ground for moral high ground (If an army takes the high ground, it has an advantage. So, figuratively, if you occupy the “moral high ground”… you get it. I hope.)

lean in (whatever that means. Oh it’s a book.)

stoush (At least it’s better than “spat”. Or is it?)

People “braving” weather again. It’s snowing. On April 4.

like farming: Putting up a picture on Facebook and asking everybody to "like" it for a good cause. When you've collected thousands of "likes", you sell it to advertisers.

link bait: contentious web articles by "controversial" columnists
Twitter memes: variations on “give a man a fish”, lame film title puns involving cake, bacon etc. “Jokes” less funny than Victorian cracker jokes. (I went to a restaurant called Moon, but didn’t enjoy it. There was no atmosphere.) Ed Balls. Enough already.

heavily used to mean “a lot”

the greek community: members of Phi Kappa etc sororities/fraternities at US universities. Apparently they’ve been bullying people.

do so: Still with us. Someone on TV just asked “And why so?”

overthinking, overthought: popular week of 2013-04-15

name-meshing (Bill Turnbull 2013-04-24 Griffin and Peacock become Puffin. Not quite.)

mindful: aware

stress: depression, anxiety, nervousness, misery, negative affect

Are people using raise for pay rise? Creeping Americanism?

MAHvlous! (several years)

That creeps me out.
popcorn, scooters and hopscotch seem to be popular

infographic (formerly diagram or Powerpoint slide, invented by Florence Nightingale)

the wow factor: Victorian terrace house disfigured with granite worktops, a marble bathroom, open-plan living and downlighters

bikini boot camp
go Amsterdam, go shops, go Nandos Where are the infuriated pedants? Shall we get up a movement?

swivelgate mid-May (Allegedly some top Tory said the Tory grassroots were “swivel-eyed loons”.)


rebunking (Undebunking. Usually results in redebunking.)

dinner-party racism
extreme couponing

culturally Marxist
is taking over from “politically correct”

cray for crazy (I think)

do so
is the new situation (and why wasn’t there a fuss over “levels”?) It doesn’t matter when the Beeb’s weatherman, Mr Fish, wears a jacket that strobes like a painting by Bridget Riley. But it does matter when he warns us about something called a ‘freezing fog situation’. There is no such thing as a freezing fog situation. What Mr Fish means is a freezing fog. In the panic of the moment, when on television, I myself have employed the word ‘situation’ when it was not strictly necessary. Even now I find myself thinking of Mr Fish as Mr Fish situation. But Mr Fish situation has all day to rehearse his little bit of dialogue situation. There is no excuse for his situation getting into a saying ‘situation’ situation. (That genius Clive James)

Buzz words of 2012, and links to the rest.


  1. I enjoyed that, and learnt about two new things: gozleme and Pecha Kucha, both quite new to me.
    I particularly object to Facebook statuses that say 'you could just ignore this, or if you're a person who really cares you could share this too.'
    Also, the campaign for people to change their statues to red equals sign to show support for gay marriage was interesting.

  2. Fascinating, I've always loved words.