Pandemic: Merriam-Webster’s 2020 word of the year

Merriam Webster’s 2020 word of the year is “pandemic.” Photo by Encyclopedia Britannica, Inc./Public Domain.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary has selected “pandemic” as 2020’s word of the year. COVID-19 has dominated the news and conversations since March, and it has transformed in-person interactions. Random House copy chief Benjamin Dreyer shares thoughts on 2020’s word of the year, and how the pandemic has affected communication. 

“The company says searches for the word on its website jumped 115,000% from last year,” says Dreyer. 

Credits

Guest:
Benjamin Dreyer - Random House copy chief, and author of “Dreyer’s English”

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Sarah Sweeney, Michell Eloy, Amy Ta, Rosalie Atkinson, Brian Hardzinski, Angie Perrin, Nihar Patel, Bennett Purser