Amirite, Ish, Swole, Janky, and More Are Now Official Words in 


Though we are a stickler for rules, we recognize that language is not dead. Popular use pushes informal terms to the fore and de-emphasizes older words until they are but fading ink on paper.

Top Story: Backhanded, Condescending Remarks You May Not Realize You're Making 

This is why you don’t use cockalorum anymore to refer to a person who thinks too highly of himself. You just call him an asshat. You also don’t say, “I feel crapulous!” after binging on a bucket of fried chicken and just say, “I feel gross… The chicken wants to GTFO of my poop chute. Help.”

To reflect the tremendous changes that are happening in The Year When Things Went Wrong, word authority releases its biggest update yet, a refresh of 15,000 entries that includes 650 new terms, 2,100 new definitions, 1,200 new etymologies, 1,700 new pronunciations, over 11,000 revised definitions, and over 7,000 revised etymologies


New words and updated terms reflect respect.

The most important changes are those that confer respect to identity and are more attuned to new world realities. The dignity of culture and history is applied to Black, which is now capitalized to refer to people. FilipinaFilipinxPinayPinoyPinxy are among the new entries connected to race and ethnicity, too.

Guided by GLAAD, gaygay man, and gay woman are now used to refer to homosexuals, which, says the site, originated as a clinical term and was considered unbiased but, in recent times, has been “associated with pathology, mental illness, and criminality.” These revisions are important because they “help better convey the diversity and richness of…human sexual experience and identity,” it adds.


Entries about addiction and suicide have also been updated to do away with disparaging connotations. The words addict, user, and alcoholic are now redefined as a person who is addicted to or a person with alcoholism. The updated terms emphasize that people with addictions are human beings.


A truckload of informal words from pop culture makes the list. 

Apart from reworked definitions that follow the contours of the woke world, updates its catalog with terms from popular culture, politics, technology, and the environment, among others. These terms have exhibited “widespread, sustained use” in the 2010s and are not just trends that exist in a moment.

For example, eco-anxiety refers to that feeling of dread you get when thinking about climate change, while off-grid is that state of living without public communication networks or just not participating in society—a dream, really.

Insidious business language continues to confuse with agile development (you know what this is) now in the mix. As well, insidious social media births sharent or a parent who incessantly shares information about their kids on social media (you know this person).

In addition to terms from specific spheres of language, there are the informal words that cranky editors can now choose to leave on manuscripts. Observe these gems:


“Am I right?”


“don’t give a fuck,” as in to not care at all


used to express an approximate feeling


inferior quality, not working, or run-down


very muscular


“greatest of all time,” as in the best ever in a category

watch now

These words prove that, despite what an angry Regina George says, you can make “fetch” happen. On that note, we will now explode our brain and use all of these in a hypothetical sentence.

These janky new words make our brain swole, but we DGAF-ish because language is GOATAmirite?

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Clifford Olanday
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