July 7, 2022


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Dictionary.com's newest replace addresses social justice points, accessibility tech, and the worldwide local weather disaster

Dictionary.com’s newest batch of updates simply dropped, and so they cowl a variety of well timed social and cultural subjects, together with accessibility, homelessness, and the worldwide local weather disaster.

Introduced on March 29, the web site’s professionals (often called lexicographers) up to date greater than 2,400 entries, which embrace the 235 new entries, 72 new definitions in present entries, and 1,024 revised definitions. The web site says it needed to deal with the ever-changing cultural spectrum of local weather, social sciences, and well being, as we encounter them on-line.

Most of the phrases deal with new methods communities use and have redefined conventional ideas. Notably, the database added the phrases “unsheltered,” “unhoused,” and “houseless” to embody the altering language utilized by activists and communities. The entry for “unhoused,” for instance, defines it as “being and not using a home to reside in or missing everlasting housing” and directs customers to each the up to date phrases and the standard phrase, “homeless.” In the identical vein, the web site added generally used phrases amongst social justice advocates or adjusted definitions to embody their present utilization, like these for “set off,” “problematic,” and “decolonize.

The phrase “decolonize” bought an up to date definition to acknowledge its use in activist areas.

The replace contains new accessibility phrases, like “auto caption,” “reside caption,” and “alt textual content,” frequent accessibility options which might be on the way in which to turning into normal apply throughout social websites and private profiles. “Whereas a few of these phrases or the applied sciences they discuss with have familiarity, particular options of every sort can differ and overlap — and capturing these distinctions and similarities is among the challenges of defining these phrases,” defined the web site’s launch.

Dictionary.com continues so as to add extra phrases related to the COVID-19 pandemic as properly, this time together with the usually thrown-around titles of “antivaxxer” and “anti-masker.”

Phrases like “vaxxer” and “anti-masker” are a part of the pandemic-era vernacular.
Because the local weather dialog evolves, so does our language.

And our ongoing international local weather disaster was additionally represented with the web site’s addition of “local weather emergency,” which it defines as “a disaster through which long-term change within the earth’s local weather is having extreme adversarial results on the surroundings, necessitating speedy and daring countermeasures.” It additionally acknowledged rising tech to deal with the disaster, like “EV(electrical automobile), “HEV (hybrid electrical automobile), “PHEV” (plug-in hybrid electrical automobile), “BEV” (battery electrical automobile), “charging station,” and “e-bike.

Per regular, Dictionary.com included some nods to pop-culture moments over the past yr, together with “NFT,” “throuple,” “memeify,” and “ranked-choice voting” (introduced again to our Twitter feeds due to the Academy Awards).

The web site edited greater than a thousand entries to replicate the modifications in utilization and social context, together with the definitions for “increase,” which now acknowledges its use in campaigns for COVID-19 vaccinations, and “code-switching,” adjusted to incorporate how people modify their very own habits to embody completely different social norms.

“From ‘Era A’ to ‘zeitgeisty,’ our newest replace to the dictionary reveals simply how large, diversified, and complicated these modifications will be. Our work at Dictionary.com is not simply to seize these modifications in language — it is to assist our customers make sense of them and why they matter for his or her lives,” wrote John Kelly, senior director of editorial for Dictionary.com, within the replace’s press launch. “As a result of our world is consistently altering, our language is consistently altering.”

View the complete checklist of phrases and explanations for entry edits on Dictionary.com.

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