And Your Top Sports-Related Word Of 2010 Is: “Vuvuzela.” Of Course It Is.
Glenn Davis 02:25 pm, November 15th, 2010
The Global Language Monitor recently completed its annual survey to determine the most prominent words of the past year in the English-speaking world. One sports term sat at the top of the list - and it may surprise you to learn it had nothing at all to do with Brett Favreor his genitals.
But it won't surprise you when you see what it is: "vuvuzela." The lightning-quick pace of the news cycle made it easy to forget, but during the World Cup, the infernal noisemakers might as well have been the only products in the entire world, because everyone was talking about them endlessly. (Us, as you can see in the link earlier in this paragraph, very much included.)
"Spillcam" (as in, the Gulf oil spill) topped the list along with "vuvuzela." There were also lists for "top names" - "Chilean Coal Miners" and "iPad" were two of those - and top phrases ("Tea Party" and "Jersey Shore" among them).
Some entries seemed less likely. "Obamania" was the No. 10 phrase, and we don't even hear that one very often. "Obamacare" - now that one, we wouldn't have been surprised to see even in the top spot.
But back to the vuvuzelas. They stole the show at the world's biggest sporting spectacle, and it doesn't surprise us a bit that the "mathematical formula" used by the Global Language Monitor turned it up more often than anything else. As annoyed as people were by vuvuzelas, they dominated the conversation. And unlike some other words on the list, we'd bet "vuvuzela" would be awfully high on the list of words used in the non-English-speaking world as well.