Collins Dictionary Names 'Fake News' as Word of the Year

By Tom Pritchard on at

Criticise Donald Trump? That's obviously fake news. Said something a random commenter didn't like? Also fake news. Given how much use of the term has grown over the past year, it's hardly surprising that Collins Dictionary has declared 'fake news' to be its word of the year. Even though it's actually two words.

Thanks to all the fake ads making the rounds on Facebook and social media, plus the fact Donald Trump deflects all negative press regarding him and his government as fake news, it's no surprise that the term has seen a 365 per cent rise in usage over the past 12 months.

It's officially defined as "false, often sensational, information disseminated under the guise of news reporting", though it's often used to represent something else entirely.

Politics has dominated Collins' top words this year, something it blames on both the presidential election in the US and the snap general election here in the UK. Corbynmania enjoyed a resurgence, as did antifa, and echo chamber (referring to people who share political opinions on social media to a bubble of people who already agree).

On the non-political side of things came gender fluid, cuffing season (referring to single people who seek relationships simply for companionship during winter), gig economy, and (unsurprisingly) fidget spinner.


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