Tomorrow evening, the 125-year-old American Dialect Society votes on the 2014 Word of the Year.
NPR shared a partial list of finalists, which range from selfie stick (for taking photos from a distance) to platisher (a platform-publisher) and vortex, which clearly has a Wikipedia article far too long and dense to win.
The society has done this for more than 20 years and many of its picks have been political: chad (2000), Bushlips (1991), weapons of mass destruction (2002), purple state (2004), truthiness (2005), and occupy (2011).
The Oxford Dictionaries have done the same for the past decade. Their pick for 2014 was vape, and they’ve tended to pick tech-related terms like podcast (2005), unfriend (2009), GIF (2012), and selfie (2013).
Not to be left out, Merriam-Webster recently declared the Word of the Year: culture. (Which doesn’t mean a whole lot by itself, but that’s a dictionary for you.)
But none of these are money-related, so Debt.com has invented some words we hope you’ll use — so one or more can become a 2015 Word of the Year…
1. Data britches (noun)
What everybody needs to pull up this year. In 2014, the nonprofit Identity Theft Resource Center counted more than 750 data breaches, which exposed more than 83 million records. Every business and consumer needs to start taking identity theft seriously.
Example: Christ, I can’t believe Sony got caught with their data britches down AGAIN.
2. Snapple Pay (noun or verb)
Example: Dude, stop being an iClone — we’ve had Snapple Pay since 2011.
3. Vacay-shunners (noun)
41 percent of Americans earn paid time off but don’t take all of it, according to the U.S. Travel Association. Since one in four companies have a use-it-or-lose-it policy, vaca-shunners are flushing cash down the toilet.
Example: My boss is a total vacay-shunner, so he gets pissed off when I try to take all my PTO.
4. Flunked-up (adjective)
At 260 colleges in the country, students default on their student loans more often than they graduate. That’s flunked-up. The new college rating system the Education Department rolls out in 2015 will factor in default and graduation rates, among other things.
Example: I don’t know why Shaq went to a flunked-up school like the University of Phoenix.
5. Obamashare (noun)
What to call the tax penalty for not participating in Obamacare — which an estimated 4 million people will pay for the first time in 2015. For the 2014 tax year, the penalty is $95 or 1 percent of taxable income per adult, whichever is higher. Between 2015 and 2024, the Congressional Budget Office expects a total Obamashare of $46 billion.
Example: Paying that damn Obamashare wrecked my tax-refund plans.
Got something better?
If you’re not going to use our words, we want to hear yours. If we mention your made-up (but useful) financial term in a follow-up later this year, we’ll send you a $25 Amazon gift certificate.