'Hashtag' Declared 2012's Word of the Year
The American Dialect Society has named "hashtag" as the word of the year, beating out "Gangnam Style," "YOLO" and "fiscal cliff," among others. Or, to put it another way: #winning.
Each year, the group nominates a series of words and phrases, and then votes to decide the word of the year. It also determines the top word in other categories, including: most useful, outrageous, unnecessary and creative. "Hashtag" is hardly a new word, but the judges concluded that it really came to prominence in 2012.
"This was the year when the hashtag became a ubiquitous phenomenon in online talk,â€ Ben Zimmer, chair of the ADS' New Words Committee, said in a statement. â€œIn the Twittersphere and elsewhere, hashtags have created instant social trends, spreading bite-sized viral messages on topics ranging from politics to pop culture."
This isn't the first time an Internet term has gotten the nod: "Tweet" was declared word of the year by the group in 2010, while "Google" was then-named the word of the decade. In a nod to the worldwide Occupy movements, the group declared "Occupy" to be last year's word of the year.
Source : http://mashable.com/2013/01/05/hashtag-word-of-year/