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Dictionary.com adds long COVID, deplatform, and asshat because that’s the world we live in now

Over 300 new entries on Dictionary.com include Aunt Jemima, deplatform, ghost gun, and the dreaded side hustle.

Dictionary.com adds long COVID, deplatform, and asshat because that’s the world we live in now
[Photo: Kristian Strand/Unsplash]
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Dictionary.com has announced that it has added over 300 new words and terms to its online offerings. And some of those offerings are a bit surprising. Others are a sign of our changing times, while still others signify the progress made in social justice movements.

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Dictionary.com’s addition of these words and phrases to its lexicon is not only significant because the site is the world’s leading resource for looking up words and phrases, the company’s lexicon also provides definitions for Amazon’s Alexa virtual assistant. That means, beginning today you can ask Alexa “what’s an asshat?” and have the term explained to you.

Here’s a handful of Dictionary.com’s new notable additions and their definitions:

  • 5G: fifth-generation: being or relating to communications technology or a mobile device that supports much faster data-transfer speeds with significantly lower latency than previous versions.
  • asshat: slang: a foolish, annoying, or contemptible person; asshole.
  • Aunt Jemima: slang: Disparaging and offensive. A Black woman considered by other Black people to be subservient to or to curry favor with white people.
  • Black Code: (in the ex-Confederate states) any code of law that defined and especially limited the rights of formerly enslaved African Americans in the period immediately following the Civil War.
  • content warning: abbreviation CW: a stated warning that the content of the immediately following text, video, etc., may upset or offend some people.
  • cultural appropriation: the adoption, usually without acknowledgment, of cultural identity markers from subcultures or minority communities into mainstream culture by people with a relatively privileged status.
  • domestic terrorism: the unlawful use of violence or threats against a country’s civilian population or government by an individual or group based and operating within the same country and without foreign direction, with the goal of furthering political, social, or ideological objectives.
  • deplatform: to prohibit (a person or people) from sharing their views in a public forum, especially by banning a user from posting on a social media website or application.
  • ghost gun: a gun that does not have a serial number and cannot be easily traced, especially one assembled at home from parts purchased without a background check.
  • ghost kitchen: a commercial facility that prepares and cooks restaurant-style food for delivery directly to customers or to one or more dine-in restaurants.
  • long COVID: a condition characterized by symptoms or health problems that linger or first appear after supposed recovery from an acute phase of COVID-19 infection.
  • long hauler: pathology. a person who experiences symptoms or health problems that linger or first appear after supposed recovery from an associated acute illness or active infection.
  • shitshow: a person or thing that is a total mess, failure, or disaster.
  • side hustle: a job or occupation that brings in extra money beyond one’s regular job and main source of income.
  • silver fox: an attractive older person with gray or silver hair, especially a man.
  • snack: slang. a sexy and physically attractive person; hottie.
  • theater: a public display of action or speech that gives a false impression of accomplishing or promising something, merely for the sake of appearances
  • zaddy: an attractive man who is also stylish, charming, and self-confident.
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About the author

Michael Grothaus is a novelist, journalist, and former screenwriter. His debut novel EPIPHANY JONES is out now from Orenda Books. You can read more about him at MichaelGrothaus.com

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