Global Language Monitor


Global Language Monitor

The Global Language Monitor (GLM) is an Austin, Texas-based company that collectively documents, analyzes and tracks trends in language usage worldwide, with a particular emphasis upon the English language. GLM is organized in the state of Nevada, as an LLC.Fact|date=December 2007 In April 2008, GLM moved its headquarters from San Diego to Austin. [ [http://www.statesman.com/news/content/news/stories/local/03/30/0330kelso.html Austin lands Global Language Monitor: Finally, something good comes from California ] ]

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History

Founded in Silicon Valley in 2003, the GLM is supported by a worldwide assemblage of linguists, professional wordsmiths, and bibliophiles to monitor the latest trends in the evolution of language, word usage and word choices as well as their impact on the various aspects of culture, such as political correctness. [ [http://www.reuters.com/article/politicsNews/idUSN2123195020061222 Stay the course named top catch phrase of 2006 | Politics | Reuters ] ] Their research and analysis on language trends and subsequent impact on politics, business and culture has been used globally in print and electronic media. [ [http://www.reuters.com/article/peopleNews/idUSN024835720070306 Sexy Time leads Hollywood word list | Entertainment | People | Reuters ] ] GLM also works closely with the Chinese-English hybrid, Chinglish, which is generating scores of new words, a number of which have been incorporated into English. This is perhaps related to the 250 million-plus Chinese now studying the English language.

Widely quoted

The GLM has been cited by the New York Times, [ [http://www.nytimes.com/2006/01/29/realestate/29cov.html?ex=1296190800&en=7a332bdb53ef5509&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss The Bubble: The Power of Words - New York Times ] ] NPR, [ [http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5182871 NPR: The English Language: 900,000 Words, and Counting ] ] the London Sunday Times, [ [http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/article726906.ece Chinglish – it's a word in a million - Times Online ] ] the Australian Broadcasting Company, [ [http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2006/s1563402.htm The World Today - The changing word: English in modern life ] ] CBS, [ [http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/04/07/national/main1482464.shtml A Million Words? He's Counting On It, SoCal Techie's Formula Tracks Language Trends, A Feat Linguists Call 'Impossible' - CBS News ] ] Voice of America, [ [http://www.voanews.com/specialenglish/archive/2005-12/2005-12-20-voa1.cfm 'Merry Christmas' vs. 'Happy Holidays': More Than a Simple Choice of Words ] ]
CNN, [ [http://edition.cnn.com/2006/SHOWBIZ/02/28/showbuzz/index.html CNN.com - Today's Buzz stories - Feb 28, 2006 ] ] UPI, [ [http://www.upi.com/NewsTrack/Entertainment/2007/07/24/survey_new_york_top_fashion_city/9887/ Survey: New York top fashion city - UPI.com ] ] Reuters, [ [http://www.reuters.com/article/lifestyleMolt/idUSN1724237520070718?pageNumber=1 New York tops list of world's fashion cities | Lifestyle | Living | Reuters ] ] and various electronic and print media on six continents.

Counting English words

GLM attempts to count the number of words in the English Language. As of 6 November 2007 it estimates the number of English words to be 995,116. This has caused controversy since linguists maintain that it is not possible to count the number of words, because it is not possible to define what a word is. For example, the English words "law" and "suit" can be combined to form the compound noun "lawsuit"; should these count as two words or three? The answer according to the rules established by GLM is three words. Similar questions can be asked for plurals ("laws", "suits", "lawsuits"), adjectives ("red", "redder", "reddest"), and verbs ("lawed", "suited"). Again, according to the rules GLM established only 'headwords' in a dictionary count as individual words, hence plurals, adjectival constructions, etc. only count as different instantiations of the same headword. Further, in languages such as German adjectives are modified depending upon case, number, and gender. So the German word for small, "klein", can become "klein", "kleine", "kleiner", "kleinem", "kleines", or "kleinen". In counting German words should each adjective count once or six times? According to GLM, the answer is one time.

In a commentary on National Public Radio's 'Fresh Air', one linguist dissected GLM's position, [ [http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyID=5390581 NPR: Enumerating English ] ] while other commentators insist on the count's validity. [ [http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/ben_macintyre/article606196.ece We're all speaking Geek | Ben Macintyre - Times Online ] ]

The theory of the 'million word count' is expanded upon in "A Million Words and Counting: How the English Language is Rewriting the World" (Citadel Press, New York, 2008).

Obama an English Language Word

On 20 February 2008 GLM announced that the latest word to enter the English language is obama in its many variations. The word is derived from the name, Barack Obama, the Senator from Illinois, and Democratic candidate for the US Presidency for the 2008 election.

GLM described Obama- as a ‘root’ for an ever-expanding number of words, including: obamamentum, obamacize, obamarama, obamaNation, obamanomics, obamican, obamafy, obamamania, and obamacam.

GLM explained, “To enter the English language, a word has to meet certain criteria, including: frequency of appearance in the written and spoken language, in the media, have a large geographic footprint, and to stand the test of time.

"In the past, this process would unfold over many years, even decades or centuries. However, the Internet, with instant global communication to billions of people has radically accelerated the cycle.”

"Other names that have made the leap into the language, include jacuzzi, kodak, macadam, Caesarian section (after Julius Caesar who was said to have been "plucked from his mother's womb"); decibel (the measure of sound), Hertz, and frisbee."

High tech terms

On 14 October 2007 GLM released a list of the most confusing high tech terms and buzzwords. The words included: "iPOD","flash","cookie","nano" and"kernel",followed by"megahertz","cell"(as in"cell phone"),"plasma",""and"Blu-Ray".Other terms being tracked included"terabyte","memory","core",and "head crash".The most confusing acronym was found to be SOA, for service-oriented architecture, an acronym which IBM published a book about. [ [http://blogs.zdnet.com/service-oriented/?p=996 Hooray! ‘SOA’ voted most ‘confusing acronym of the year’ | Service-Oriented Architecture | ZDNet.com ] ] The study was released on the 13th anniversary of the "cookie," the invention that made the World Wide Web practical for widespread surfing, communication, and e-commerce. [ [http://www.nanowerk.com/news/newsid=2968.php The Global Language Monitor releases global study of top 10 most confusing yet widely used high tech buzzwords for 2007 ] ]

Top word of the year

Top word of 2007

On 13 December, 2007 GLM released its annual Word of the Year (WOTY) lists including top phrases and top names.cite web
last =
first =
authorlink =
coauthors =
title=Media Tracking and Analysis: History of Top Words From 2007 - 2000
publisher=Global Language Monitor
date=13 December 2007
url =http://languagemonitor.com/Top_Word_Lists.html
accessdate=2007-12-26
] 'Hybrid' was named as the top WOTY, [http://news.google.com/news?btcid=6c09982686b3894b "Comment by Paul JJ Payack, President, The Global Language Monitor"] (google news comment) "Why A Green Word was chosen as The Global Language Monitor Word of the Year" - 13 December, 2007. Retrieved 26 December 2007] 'Climate Change' was named the top phrase, and 'Al Gore' the top name. GLM explained, cquote|The idea of planetary peril and impending climatic doom resonated throughout our linguistic analysis, with the various words and phrases garnering hundreds of millions of citations; in the end this narrowly outdistanced the word 'surge' that also had a disproportionate impact upon 2007's linguistic landscape.cite web
last =
first =
authorlink =
coauthors =
title='Hybrid' bests 'Surge' as Top Word of 2007; 'Climate Change' is Top Phrase; Al Gore' is Top Name; Top Smiley is ?-) for 'pirate' Arrrrgh!: Why a 'Green' Word was Chosen as WOTY
publisher=Global Language Monitor
date=13 December 2007
url =http://languagemonitor.com/
accessdate=2007-12-26
]
The words were culled from throughout the English-speaking world that GLM says currently numbers some 1.35 billion speakers and includes such diverse cultures as China, the Philippines, and India.

2007 top ten words

The top ten words for 2007 as stated by GLM are:
# Hybrid, referring to hybrid electric vehicles (HEV). Chosen "to represent all things green from biodiesel to wearing clothes made of soy, to global warming to living with a zero-carbon footprint."
# Surge, referring to political and military strategy of the Bush administration to win the Iraq war.
# Bubble, referring to the U.S. housing bubble and related credit crunch.
# Smirting, a portmanteau of 'smoking' and 'flirting' often while being banished outside a building for smoking cigarettes.
# Pb, referring to the symbol lead, the "culprit in innumerable toy recalls this year".
# Ideating, forming and relating ideas.
# Ω-3 or omega-3 fatty acids, the "healthy fatty acid.
# Cleavage, referring to a woman's breasts, which the GLM states is "a touchy campaign subject" in the US elections.
# Amigoization, referring to the "increasing Hispanic influence in California, the Southwest and into the Heartland.
# Bluetooth, referring to technology to connect electronic devices by radio waves.

2007 top ten phrases

#"Climate change" -- The warming of the Earth’s atmosphere;
#"Ho-Ho-Ho" -- Santa’s trademark phrase. In Australia officials are suggesting ‘Ha-Ha-Ha’ because the former may scandalize the children;
#"All-time low" -- The phrase apparently grafted next to the president’s name in the media;
#"Theory of Everything" -- Garrett Lisi’s especially simple theory of the Universe that unites all forces and gravity in one elegant structure;
#"Planetary Peril" -- Al Gore’s trademark phrase to describe the Earth’s current condition;
#"Wristband Wagon" -- Wearing your heart on your … wrist. Pink against breast cancer, red against third-world poverty, ‘camouflage’ (or yellow as in yellow ribbon) to support the troops;
#"No Noising" -- Chinese/English hybrid (Chinglish) for ‘quiet please!’;
#"Fade to black" -- From the Soprano’s series finale to the Hollywood writers’ strike;
#"Fossil Fuels" -- The enemy of the Greens: Coal, Oil, and Natural Gas (anything hydrocarbon-based);
#"Fashion tribe" -- Persons who follow a particular fashion with a tribe-like mindset: Examples include EMO, Hip-hop or Goth.

2007 top ten names

#"Al Gore -- Conveniently, doesn’t need the presidency to top the list;
#"The Decider -- George W. Bush, still president after all these years;
#"Bono -- The U2 front man stands out in front on Third World debt relief;
#"Barack Obama & Hillary Clinton -- Barack Obama’s surname now qualifies as a buzzword; quite unusual, though Hil comes close;
#"Hugo Chavez -- The Gadfly of Latin America;
#"Vladimir Putin -- The supreme leader (President, Prime Minister, whatever) of the Russian Federation;
#"Mahmoud Ahmadinejad -- Iranian President suggests moving Israel to Europe;
#"Pope Benedict XVI -- continues to engage Muslim leadership in thoughtful discussions;
#"David Beckham and Posh Spice -- Yet another ‘new’ type of Hollywood power couple;
#"Fidel Castro -- The head one of the few remaining Communist states lives yet another year.

Top ten words from 2000 to 2007

2007: Hybrid (representing all things green} No 2. Surge;

2006: Sustainable;

2005: Refugee vs. Evacuee, No 2. Tsunami, No. 3 Katrina;

2004: Top Word: Incivility (for inCivil War); Top Phrase: Red States/Blue States,No. 2: Rush to War; Top Name: Dubya/Rove;

2003: Top Word: Embedded; Top Phrase: Shock and Awe;No. 2: Rush to War; Top Name: Saddam Hussein; No. 2 Dubya.

2002: Misunderestimate; Top Phrase: Threat Fatigue; Top Name: W (Dubya).

2001: Top Word: Ground Zero; Top Phrase: 'Let's Roll'; Top Name: The Heroes.

2000: Top Word: Chad; Top Phrase: Dot.com; Top Name: W (Dubya).

Note: From 2007-2004, Global Language Monitor; from 2003 to 2000, GLM predecessor, yourDicitonary.

Top Top Fashion Cities from 2008 and 2007

The Global Language Monitor's annual list of the Top Fashion Cities ranked by media exposure; the 2008 ranking, the 2007 rank, and commentary follow.

New York (1) - No. 1 for the fifth year running. Rome (2) - The Eternal City, again, a strong No. 2. Paris (3) - Perhaps No. 1 in the world’s hearts and mind - but not the media’s. Milan (5) - Overtakes London in this survey. London (4) - The Elite Five far outdistance the rest. Los Angeles (6) - LA knocks on the door of the Elite Five. Sydney (12) - Sydney makes a huge move, breaking into the Top 10. Las Vegas (9) - The intense media spotlight improves Vegas’ ranking. Berlin (11) - Berlin continues its very strong presence. Tokyo (6) - Tokyo remains the capital of the Asian Fashion Industry. Hong Kong (8) - Threatening to move ahead of Tokyo. Dubai (24) - Massive marketing fueled by petrodollars can make an impact. Shanghai (14) - Vies with Hong Kong for the lead in China. Singapore (10) - Significant fashion infrastructure keeps its ranking strong. Madrid (New) - Reasserts the Iberian fashion lead over Barcelona. Moscow (16) - Firmly ensconces itself in the Top Twenty. Santiago (19) - Leads Latin America. Melbourne (15) - Take a second seat to a high-flying Sydney. Stockholm (New) - First Scandinavian on the list. Buenos Aires (22) - Traditional leader in fashion continues to move up the rankings. Johannesburg (23) - Joburg improves two spots. Mumbai (18) - Mumbai again leads the Subcontinent. Cape Town (New) - Joburg’s rival is new to the list. New Delhi (New) - New Delhi makes the List, but still is outpaced by Bollywood. Barcelona (13) - Still in the Top Twenty-five though Madrid has strong lead. Miami (New) - Makes the list on its leadership in swimwear. Krakow (25) - Shares the neo-Bohemian spotlight with Prague. Prague (New) - No neo about this rising center of fashion. Toronto (New) — First Canadian city on the list; Montreal just missed the rankings. Rio de Janeiro (20) - Strong Latin American No. 3 outpacing Sao Paolo. Others in the rankings included Copenhagen, Montreal, Sao Paolo, and Bangkok

Predictive Quantities Indicator

GLM uses another tool, its Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI) to run analytics on global language trends that it catalogs on its site. PQI "tracks momentum, direction, year-over-year changes, as well as several other indicators, and produces a statistically normalized result." This proprietary algorithm tracks the frequency of words and phrases in the global print and electronic media, on the Internet, throughout the blogosphere, as well as accessing proprietary databases (Factiva, Lexis-Nexis, etc.). It claims the PQI to be a weighted index, factoring in long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum, and velocity. As such it can create "signals" that can be used in a variety of applications.

Chinglish and the Beijing Olympics

It had been widely reported that Chinese Authorities had a goal of eradicating Chinglish (the Chinese/English language hybrid) in Beijing and environs before the 2008 Summer Games. To this end, the authorities replaced thousands of road and highways signs and, even standardized menus at the top restaurants so diners would no longer find such menu entrees as 'exploding shrimp,' or 'husband and wife lung slice'. [ http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08214/901069-123.stm]

GLM took the position that rather than eliminating Chinglish, the Olympic games will actual spur its growth because of the inevitable cross-pollination that would occur between English and Mandarin. [ http://uk.reuters.com/article/reutersComService_2_MOLT/idUKL212754220080802]

Internet-based College and University Rankings

In September 2008, the "Global Language Monitor ranked the nation’s colleges and universities "according their appearance on the Internet, throughout the Blogosphere, as well in the global print and electronic media" [ [http://www.upi.com/Top_News/2008/09/16/Harvard_tops_US_colleges_in_media_buzz/UPI-85611221582607/] ] .

The schools were also ranked according to ‘media momentum’ defined as having the largest change in media citations over the last year, among other criteria.

The purpose of the methodology was to perceive the schools through the eyes of the world at large since “Prospective students, alumni, employers, and the world at large believe that students who are graduated from such institutions will carry on the all the hallmarks of that particular school" [ [http://www.languagemonitor.com/college-rankings] ] .

GLM used its proprietary Predictive Quantities Indicator (PQI) software for what it called its TrendTopper Media Buzz Analysis. It employed the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching’s classifications to distinguish between Universities and Liberal Arts Colleges. The schools were ranked according to their positions in early September, a mid-year snapshot, and used the last day of 2007 as the base.

References

See also

* Barack Obama
* Bibliophile
* Bushism
* Chinglish
* English language
* Fashion capital
* Jargon
* Javier Bardem
* Global Warming Controversy
* Jargon
* Jumping the Shark
* Linguist
* Okay
* Political correctness
* PQI
* Tom Cruise
* Trend
* Truthiness
* Wardrobe malfunction
* Wikipedia in culture
* Word of the year
* Wordsmith


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