Vape-tastic news! Taking the win for Oxford Dictionary’s 2014 Word of the Year, vaping has officially crossed the threshold into mainstream media. An abbreviated version of vaporize or vaporizer, “vape” refers to both the action of vaporizing material as well as the vaporizer you use to vape. Whoa, vape-a-delic man.
How and why does one word emerge victorious as Word of the Year? Vape-xcellent question! A group of lexicographers (aka dictionary-makers) pick winners by measuring the word’s use, and you are thirty times more likely to hear the word vape now than you were two years ago. According to one of these lexicographers, “the growing popularity of e-cigarettes, combined with the legal cannabis industry, created a perfect storm.” *
Vape beat out words “bae” and “budtender” to emerge vape-torious in 2014. Past winners include selfie (2013), GIF (2012), and podcast (2005).
*Cover photo and quote taken from this New York Times article by Jessica Bennett.