Banned Words of 2010

A new year means a chance to leave some of the tired words and phrases of 2009 in the past. At least that’s the theory of the wordsmiths at Lake Superior State University, who released their 35th annual (deep breath) List of Words Banished from the Queen’s English for Mis-use, Over-use and General Uselessness.

This year’s 15 offenders make up a tech-heavy list. Tweet (and any variation thereof) is included, as is the verb form of friend (as in friending or unfriending someone). App — as a shortened word for application — is another offender. And at the end of a rough financial year, much of the jargon of economic pain has run its course: In these economic times, toxic assets and too big to fail have no place in 2010.

Some surprising omissions? None of 2009’s most overused health care buzzwords were included (public option, anyone?). But President Obama makes the list, though only as a prefix — Obamanomics, Obamanation, etc. — as do his czars. Glenn Beck could need to come up with a whole new vocabulary in 2010.

The small Michigan university receives thousands of nominations over the course of the year before selecting the most flagrant offenders. Does the list hold any actual power? Some of the banned words from 2008 still crept into conversation last year: bailout, Wall Street/Main Street and carbon footprint continue to be abused. Thankfully, First Dude, maverick and game changer were relegated to the sidelines.

The complete 2010 list:

1. Shovel-ready
2. Transparent/Transparency
3. Czar
4. Tweet
5. App
6. Sexting
7. Friend as a verb
8. Teachable Moment
9. In These Economic Times …
10. Stimulus
11. Toxic Assets
12. Too Big to Fail
13. Bromance
14. Chillaxin’
15. Obama as a prefix

Source: Time magazine

So what cliches are you ready to axe? I would never miss these:

“At the end of the day…”
“There you go.”
“Super” as in “I’m super-excited. That’s super-cool.”

Send in the cliche you would like to be banned by Friday afternoon and I’ll reward the best one with a hot-off-the-press copy of The Choice! Leave a comment here or e-mail mail me: suzanne at suzannewoodsfisher dot com

Looking forward to your overused jargon!

About Suzanne

Suzanne Woods Fisher writes bestselling, award winning fiction and non-fiction books about the Old Order Amish for Revell Books. Her interest in the Plain People began with her Old Order German Baptist grandfather, raised in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. Suzanne's app, Amish Wisdom, delivers a daily Amish proverb to your phone or iPad. She writes a bi-monthly column for Christian Post and Cooking & Such magazine. She lives with her family in California and raises puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind. To Suzanne's way of thinking, you can't take life too seriously when a puppy is running through your house with someone's underwear in its mouth.


  1. kris4tea says:


  2. Elaine W. Miller says:

    I don't like the word, "peeps!" Not sure if it is short for peeping Toms, baby chicks, potty-training two year olds, or favorite people.

  3. Anonymous says:

    would love to ban the word dollop. For whatever reson this word makes no sense to me. Just one of my can't stand words. love your work. thanks

  4. Janet says:


  5. Karla Hanns says:

    I have an extreme dislike to people saying "Whatever" when you talk to them- especially teenagers!! Can you tell- I have one???

  6. Wendy says:

    The texting short cuts – I don't like them at all!

  7. Anonymous says:

    I would love to see frickin gone…. I really do not like to hear that word at all.

  8. megan says:

    I can stand when people in meetings say "Let's unpack that a little bit more". Unless I'm just getting back from vacation and you are referring to my luggage, DON'T say that irritating phrase!!!

  9. Just little ole me says:


  10. Nancylee says:

    how about "so"
    as in I am SO done with that phrase!

  11. Patricia W says:

    yadda, yadda, yadda…
    can't stand it!!!

  12. itsJUSTme-wendy says:

    The phrase I would like to axe is
    "24/7" this phrase is sooo overused!
    Even in the movies. I never want to hear it again and I personally never use it.

  13. Sandra Kaczanowcke says:

    "My Bad" —- Just say I'm sorry, or my mistake. Where did this phrase come from?

  14. Anonymous says:

    crazy-busy or crazy-anything

  15. Mocha with Linda says:

    I am so tired of "_____ is the new _______". It's ridiculous! The day I saw one that said "black is the new black", I thought, "Huh?! What is the point?!"

  16. Brenda says:

    The use of the word "organic" to describe other than food.

  17. Anonymous says:

    the phrase, hanging in there

  18. where’s my post? not writing the whole post out again lol you missed a typo mods