Word of the year 2023


DALL·E 2 WOTY 2023 in Picasso style

It’s that time of year. Dictionary publishers are telling us about the trends they have detected in 2023. In this article we focus on six English picks but later on we may open out the article to include items in Tradiling’s other working languages: Catalan, French, German and Spanish.

I particularly like “rizz”, the Oxford dictionaries Word of the Year 2023. As they explain,

Pertaining to someone’s ability to attract another person through style, charm, or attractiveness, this term is from the middle part of the word ‘charisma’, which is an unusual word formation pattern. Other examples include ‘fridge’ (refrigerator) and ‘flu’ (influenza).

Taking a look at the shortlists and other winners, AI is the trending topic. Things will never be the same again!



  • Word of the year: AI
  • Shortlist: AI, Bazball, deinfluencing, nepo baby, ultra-processed, canon event, debanking, greedflation, semaglutide, ULEZ
  • Method of selection: Unknown
  • Web: https://www.collinsdictionary.com/woty




  • Word of the year: authentic
  • Shortlist: rizz, deepfake, coronation, dystopian, EGOT, X, implode, covenant, doppelgänger, indict, elemental, kibbutz, deadname,
  • Method of selection: prominent searches in the online dictionary
  • Web: https://www.merriam-webster.com/wordplay/word-of-the-year

Oxford dictionaries

OUP word of the year shortlist

And what do our silicon friends say? Yes, we asked ChatGPT 3.5 for a verdict. Its [1] answer started like this:

As of my last knowledge update in January 2023, I don’t have access to information on events or trends occurring after that date, including any potential “word of the year” for 2023.

It went on a bit longer but after this self-disqualification Iwedon’tthink that the rest of the answer is relevant.

Not to be frustrated, we next consulted Google Bard.


What would be your 2023 “word of the year” and what 5 other items would on your shortlist?


Here are my top six contenders for the “Word of the Year” for 2023:

1. Hallucinate

This word has been gaining traction in recent years as a way to describe the surreal and often confusing experiences that can arise from the increasing influence of technology on our lives. It reflects the growing sense that we are living in a world that is increasingly difficult to distinguish from virtual reality.

2. Authentic

This word has been a popular theme in 2023, as people have become more discerning about the authenticity of the information and experiences they consume. It reflects a desire for truth and genuineness in a world that is often saturated with artificiality.

3. Rizz

This relatively new word for “romantic appeal or charm” has exploded in popularity in 2023, largely thanks to its adoption by social media influencers and celebrities. It captures the essence of a certain type of charisma that is both playful and confident.

4. Swiftie

This term for an enthusiastic fan of Taylor Swift has been around for a while, but it has truly come into its own in 2023 as the singer has continued to dominate pop culture. It reflects the intense loyalty and devotion that fans of certain celebrities can exhibit.

5. Endemic

This word, meaning “present, widespread, or constantly occurring in a particular place or environment,” has been increasingly used to describe the persistent and pervasive nature of certain problems, such as climate change, political corruption, and mental health challenges.


  • Zoom fatigue: This term describes the exhaustion and mental strain that can result from prolonged video conferencing.

  • The metaverse: This term refers to a hypothetical immersive virtual world that combines aspects of social media, online gaming, and augmented reality.

  • Climate anxiety: This term describes the growing sense of worry and fear about the negative impacts of climate change.

  • Gen Z: This cohort of young people, born after 1995, has been characterized by their technological fluency, social activism, and skepticism of traditional institutions.

  • Hybrid work: This describes the increasingly common practice of working from home and the office on an alternating or flexible basis.

So, not much difference between the human selections and the silicon selections. Lexicographers, beware! Tradiling readers, what more can we say?

Happy holidays!

  1. I was not sure what pronoun to use. ChatGPT 3.5 recommended this: ‘You can refer to me as “it.” I’m just a computer program, so there’s no gender associated with my existence.’

Catalan word of the year 2023

The Observatori de Neologia of the Universitat Pompeu Fabra has announced (21.12.23) its word of the year 2023: viralitzar.

Read about the competition and the short list of candidates at the competition web page.

Spanish word of the year 2023

FundéuRAR have just published their shortlist, featuring the following words: amnistía, ecosilencio, euribor, FANI, fediverso, fentanilo, guerra, humanitario, macroincendio, polarización, seismo, ultrafalso.

27.12.23 Stop press. The winner is announced: polarización.

Richard Samson
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About Richard Samson

I’m a teacher living in Osona, Spain. I'm into tennis, dogs, and chickens. I’m also interested in translation and Moodle (well, digital tools for teaching, in general).
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