The expression “May you live in interesting times” is a solid way to describe 2019. It’s been a tumultuous year in which words have played a starring role. Our society has never been more polarized, and words continue to prove their power to unite or divide, confuse or clarify, lift us up or tear us down. For context, check out Merriam-Webster’s word of the year (“they”) and the most looked-up words.
Which brings us to the contenders for the words and phrases we are just plain done with in 2019. These were selected because they are no longer timely, are overused or jargony, reflect themes we don’t want to experience in 2020 - or are repeat offenders that simply won’t go away (no matter how many times we’ve put them on the chopping block.)
With clarity as our guiding theme - and gratitude to everyone who offered suggestions - here are the 20 words and phrases we vote for retirement in 2020.
Want to see which words we retired over the last nine years? You can check them out here: