'Single-use' is Collins' word of the year for 2018

The Collins dictionary has adopted an environmentally conscious approach to its "Word of the Year" award, be...

Posted: Nov 6, 2018 11:05 PM

The Collins dictionary has adopted an environmentally conscious approach to its "Word of the Year" award, bestowing 2018's accolade on the term "single-use."

As the world becomes increasingly aware of the damage caused by plastic waste, more and more people are turning their backs on disposable packaging, bringing the term single-use -- or made to be used once only -- into common parlance.

While single-use may have once epitomized a carefree and convenient lifestyle, it has now come to represent society's worst excesses.

Images of plastic adrift in the ocean, causing the suffering and death of marine animals, have led to a global campaign to reduce its use.

Lexicographers for Collins create an annual list of new and notable words that reflect ever-changing culture and the preoccupations of those who experience it.

Their research has found that "single-use" is now four times as common as it was in 2013, with news stories and images such as those seen in the BBC's Blue Planet II heightening public awareness of the issue.

Since the award's inception, these timely terms have been singled out for special recognition: geek (2013), photobomb (2014), binge-watch (2015), Brexit (2016) and fake news (2017).

Green issues feature elsewhere on this year's long list, with "plogging" also emerging as a popular conversational term.

The Scandinavian fitness craze combines jogging with a good deed -- picking up litter. First noted in 2016, according to Collins, the fad has now spread around the world.

The list also includes "vegan" as the popularity of choosing not to eat or use animal-based products has gone from strength to strength in Britain -- where the dictionary is published -- and beyond.

#MeToo, the global campaign against predatory sexual behavior, also features. The Collins database shows the term transcended its original status as a social-media hashtag to become part of language, as seen in phrases such as "the MeToo era" and "MeToo moment."

Similarly, "gaslight" -- meaning to manipulate others, often romantic partners, by leading them to question their sanity -- has seen a 20-fold increase over the past five years.

Protests about the casting of white actors as characters from minority ethnic groups has led to the inclusion of "whitewash."

On a lighter note, the 2018 soccer FIFA World Cup scored an entry for the acronym "VAR," meaning video assistant referee, technology that was widely used and often controversial in the tournament.

Meanwhile a tournament of a different kind -- the blockbuster online video game Fortnite -- has led to the inclusion of "floss," a victory dance performed by the winning gamer's avatar.

A huge playground craze in 2018, it has also been widely attempted by sport, music and TV stars.

Helen Newstead, head of language content at Collins, described 2018 as "a year where awareness and often anger over a variety of issues has led to the rise of new words and the revitalization and adaptation of old ones."

"The words in this year's list perhaps highlight a world at extremes -- at one end, serious social and political concerns, and at the other, more light-hearted activities."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 512632

Reported Deaths: 10262
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison34853555
DeSoto33162432
Hinds32556641
Jackson24830389
Rankin22442402
Lee16238242
Madison14874283
Jones14086247
Forrest13741259
Lauderdale12249324
Lowndes11286193
Lamar10644140
Pearl River9707244
Lafayette8827143
Hancock7835132
Washington7550169
Oktibbeha7204138
Monroe6989179
Pontotoc6970109
Warren6849178
Panola6746134
Neshoba6726210
Marshall6653141
Bolivar6440151
Union633897
Pike5924156
Alcorn5862107
Lincoln5525136
George510180
Prentiss500884
Tippah490282
Itawamba4829107
Scott477499
Adams4766125
Tate4748116
Leflore4723144
Copiah455895
Yazoo455591
Simpson4543117
Wayne442772
Covington432895
Sunflower4299106
Marion4265112
Coahoma4227109
Leake413790
Newton395581
Tishomingo381793
Grenada3775109
Stone365666
Jasper340166
Attala337790
Winston317792
Chickasaw313367
Clay311878
Clarke301195
Calhoun284449
Holmes271289
Smith268952
Yalobusha243747
Tallahatchie231453
Greene224749
Walthall221366
Lawrence217840
Perry213356
Amite209557
Webster205148
Noxubee188642
Montgomery181557
Carroll174441
Jefferson Davis173643
Tunica163239
Benton152639
Kemper144941
Choctaw136527
Claiborne134238
Humphreys131139
Franklin124929
Quitman107528
Wilkinson105939
Jefferson96834
Sharkey65121
Issaquena1957
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 845108

Reported Deaths: 16115
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1161242006
Mobile741961379
Madison53291732
Shelby38328368
Baldwin38074589
Tuscaloosa36017641
Montgomery34483781
Lee25557263
Calhoun22585518
Morgan22454406
Etowah20016517
Marshall18781316
Houston17729425
St. Clair16880358
Limestone16138218
Cullman16050303
Elmore15904294
Lauderdale14984306
Talladega14191299
DeKalb12971269
Walker12029380
Blount10715192
Autauga10517157
Jackson10161194
Coffee9415192
Colbert9341208
Dale9018191
Tallapoosa7255201
Russell707865
Chilton7018170
Escambia6955143
Covington6933195
Franklin6342108
Chambers5784142
Marion5403130
Dallas5285209
Pike5118109
Clarke484986
Lawrence4826129
Winston4780110
Geneva4642136
Bibb434094
Barbour369480
Butler3434100
Marengo342393
Monroe337066
Randolph334367
Pickens333188
Fayette330085
Henry320666
Hale318389
Cherokee317763
Crenshaw260477
Washington257052
Cleburne254460
Lamar251453
Clay250869
Macon244764
Conecuh192862
Coosa185047
Lowndes178168
Wilcox177438
Bullock152645
Perry141840
Sumter139241
Greene130245
Choctaw93228
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