Newswire: Merriam-Webster’s word of the year is “-ism,” which is not actually a word

Merriam-Webster, the leading publisher of dictionaries in the U.S. as well as The A.V. Club‘s go-to grammar argument settler, has announced its word of the year. The honor is bestowed at the end of each calendar cycle on the term that receives both “a high volume of lookups and a significant year-over-year increase in lookups at Merriam-Webster.com.” Typically, it’s a word that conveys some special significance, related to current events or significant cultural milestones for that year. And for 2015, the company has revealed that its Word Of The Year is “-ism,” which, yes, is not actually a word.

To be fair, Merriam-Webster chose “-ism,” a suffix, as a stand-in for a broad swath of some of its most popular words this year, which is a polite way of saying it has a reason for calling something that isn’t a word the word of …

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