The 2021 Dictionary Words You Should Know

Another year, another round of jargon to catch up on. Merriam-Webster has added a new set of words, which reflects just how unique the last couple of years have been. Tell us how many you already knew:

  • ASMR: Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response describes a pleasant, calming “tingly feeling” you get in the back of your scalp in response too certain sounds like whispering, chopping, or crinkling paper.
  • BIPOC: Black, Indigenous, (and) People of Color, an acronym that recognizes the systemic racial and civil rights injustices that people in Black and Indigenous cultures face.
  • Decarceration: Release from prison, the practice or policy of reducing the number of people subject to imprisonment.
  • Deepfake: A synthetic, digitally manipulated audio or video, usually created with the help of Artificial Intelligence, and can be used to mimic a person’s face or voice.
  • Doomscrolling: That thing we all do where we spend an excessive amount of screen time scrolling endlessly through news and posts.
  • Don’t @ Me: AKA, don’t mention me by my social media handle or call me out on this questionable opinion.
  • Elbow bump: The fist bump of the COVID era.
  • Performative: This one got an updated definition for 2021, something “made or done for show (as to bolster one’s own image or make a positive impression on others).”

Check out more 2021 dictionary words you should knowHERE.


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