Fake news and Corbynmania: These are Collins Dictionary's words of the year for 2017

 
Rebecca Smith
President Trump Holds News Conference In East Room Of White House
President Donald Trump is fond of using the term "fake news" (Source: Getty)

Drum roll please... The moment you've all been waiting for has arrived.

Collins Dictionary has released its very carefully chosen word of the year for 2017. As you might expect in a rather politically charged year, a flurry of political terms were vying for the title, including Corbynmania.

But, the winning word (well, two words) is "fake news". The term has been defined as meaning "false, often sensational information disseminated under the guise of news reporting".

Read more: Trump attacks media as "fake news" on 100th day in office

A favourite phrase of US President Donald Trump, fake news has been increasingly picked up over this year, with usage of it rocketing 365 per cent since 2016.

Collins Dictionary lexicographers monitor the 4.5bn strong Collins Corpus and compile the annual list of new and notable words to reflect our ever-evolving language.

Words of the year 2017

Word Definition
Fake news (ˌfeɪk ˈnjuːz) noun: false, often sensational, information disseminated under the guise of news reporting
Antifa (ˈæntɪˌfɑː) noun: (1) an antifascist organization (2) a member of an antifascist organization adjective: (3) involving, belonging to, or relating to an antifascist organization
Corbynmania (ˌkɔːbɪnˈmeɪnɪə) noun: fervent enthusiasm for Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the UK Labour Party
Cuffing season (ˈkʌfɪŋ ˌsiːzən) noun: the period of autumn and winter, when single people are considered likely to seek settled relationships rather than engage in casual affairs
Echo chamber (ˈɛkəʊ ˌtʃeɪmbə) noun: an environment, especially on a social media site, in which any statement of opinion is likely to be greeted with approval because it will only be read or heard by people who hold similar views
Fidget spinner (ˈfɪdʒɪt ˌspɪnə) noun: a small toy comprising two or three prongs arranged around a central bearing, designed to be spun by the fingers as means of improving concentration or relieving stress
Gender-fluid (ˌdʒɛndəˈfluːɪd) adjective: not identifying exclusively with one gender rather than another
Gig economy (ˈɡɪɡ ɪˌkɒnəmɪ) noun: an economy in which there are few permanent employees and most jobs are assigned to temporary or freelance workers
Insta (ˈɪnstə) adjective: of or relating to the photo-sharing application Instagram
Unicorn (ˈjuːnɪˌkɔːn) noun: (1) an imaginary creature depicted as a white horse with one long spiralled horn growing from its forehead, regarded as symbol of innocence and purity (2) a recently launched business enterprise that is valued at more than one billion dollars

Helen Newstead, head of language content at Collins, said:

Much of this year’s list is definitely politically charged, but with a new president in the US and a snap election in the UK it is perhaps no surprise that politics continues to electrify the language.

‘Fake news’, either as a statement of fact or as an accusation, has been inescapable this year, contributing to the undermining of society’s trust in news reporting: given the term’s ubiquity and its regular usage by President Trump, it is clear that Collins’ word of the year ‘fake news’ is very real news.

Fake news will be added to the next print edition of Collins Dictionary.

Read more: Rising "fake news" concerns present opportunity for publishers

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