Winning words, the most popular words of 2012


Project X-feest, a Project X party, has been voted the Dutch word of the year by dictionary maker Van Dale, Onze Taal reports.

The word refers to a spontaneous party to which everybody is invited, and is named after the movie Project X which tells the story of a similar party. In September this year the small town of Haren suffered over 1 million euro in damages after looters and rioters visited Project X Haren.

The second place was awarded to the word bangalijst, a list of girls that are considered ‘easy’.

Some other words from the West considered good, influential or popular, all from Onze Taal:

  • Omnishambles (English word of the year according to Oxford Dictionaries): “a situation that has been comprehensively mismanaged, and is characterized by a string of blunders and miscalculations”.
  • GIF (American English word of the year according to Oxford Dictionaries): type of image format, popular because it allows for simple animations.
  • Yolo (German word of the year according to Der Spiegel): abbreviation for ‘you only live once’.
  • Watture (French word of the year according to Le Point): electric car (watt + voiture).
  • Frietchinees (Dutch word of the year in Belgium according to Van Dale): a French fries stall run by a Chinese person.
  • Pandapunten (most beautiful Dutch word says the Instituut voor Nederlandse Lexicologie): points you get for abstaining from sex.

Some of the ugliest words:

  • Throughput (Dutch, the ugliest word in education).
  • Grexit (ugliest Dutch word says the Instituut voor Nederlandse Lexicologie): the expulsion of Greece from the Eurozone.

One of my personal favourites, after watture, is the German word komasutra, the result of drunk people attempting to make love.


  1. […] late addition to our list of Words of the Year 2012 is that of Onze Taal, ‘the Dutch association for language […]

  2. […] media and IT have definitely changed Dutch vocabulary for good. In 2012 we had ‘Project X-feest’ (‘Project X party’), a local word from the name of a birthday party event on Facebook turned into a riot and in 2009 […]

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