December 18, 2018

Frisians blocking the motorway Dutch Word of the Year 2018

Filed under: General,Literature by Orangemaster @ 2:40 pm

‘Blokkeerfries’ has won the Dutch Word of the Year 2018, followed by ‘yogasnuiver’ (‘yoga sniffer’) and ‘mangomoment’ (‘mango moment’) in third place.

‘Blokkerfries’ is described by Dutch dictionary Van Dale (a collaboration between the Dutch in the Netherlands and the Flemish in Belgium) as one of the people who blocked a motorway in [the Dutch province of] Friesland in order to stop others from demonstrating against an aspect of the Sinterklaas tradition, considered by some as a defender of it. You’ll notice they are not explicitly mentioning the now controversial ‘blackface’ aspect of Zwarte Piet, but that’s what was generally meant at the time.

A ‘yoga sniffer’ is someone that usually has a healthy lifestyle, but then once in a while goes overboard with party drugs and cocaine when they go out. For the advance class, if you do encounter the Dutch word ‘cultuursnuiver’ (‘culture sniffer’), it means someone who takes in culture, which is a positive thing.

‘Mangomoment’ refers to a Flemish television moment where a patient experienced a moment of happiness when the presenter of the show brought them a mango. Van Dale says it means a moment of happiness experienced by a seriously ill patient due to a seemingly insignificant, non-medical act or comment from a doctor or healthcare provider during normal healthcare activities.


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December 17, 2018

Dutch Word of the Year 2018 vote almost done

Filed under: General,Literature by Orangemaster @ 4:07 pm

If you are so inclined, you have until 5 pm today to vote for the Dutch Word of the Year 2018 by following the link below. Tomorrow, the winners will be announced.

The Van Dale dictionary folks have 18 new words on the shortlist, and I’m going to attempt to explain a few of them that seem to be talked about the most, or at least that’s what I’ve been reading.

– Balanstrutje (‘Balance bitch’). One of those more well-to-do Dutch women preaching bullshit about balancing work and career (and self-care, and whatever else) purely to flog shit to other gullible women.

– Blokkeerfries (‘Blocking Frisian’). The name for Zwarte Piet defenders from Friesland who thought it was OK to illegally block a motorway to protest the change of ZP’s appearance because they felt it attacked their cultural identity.

– Primarkpremie (‘Primark premium’). Named after the Irish chain Primark, a ‘Primark premium’ is when Dutch -based companies receive subsidies for staff who earn no more than a quarter more than minimum wage.

That last one makes a lot of people’s stomach turn and could win, we’ll see.


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December 15, 2015

‘Cheat software’ is the Dutch word of the year 2015

Filed under: Automobiles,General,Technology by Orangemaster @ 10:40 am

Inspired by the Volkswagen emissions scandal, ‘sjoemelsoftware’ (‘cheat software’) was crowned Dutch word of the year 2015 today, with 48% of the votes. The definition is ‘software to positively influence the test results of a device, like software used in cars to make carbon dioxide emissions appear more favourable’. Since compound words work well in Dutch, the word ‘sjoemel’ can be coupled with a whole bunch of other words to imply something has been tampered with to defeat a device, a bit like a copper penny in the electricity meter.

Dutch kids have been creative this year, coming up with ‘Tinderellasyndroom’ (‘Tinderella syndrome’), with 34% of the votes for youth word of the year. The word means ‘young people who cannot flirt in real life and depend on mobile apps like Tinder’. What’s odd is that ‘Tinderella’ in English already was a woman found on Tinder presumably by a man, while the Cinderella complex defines an unconscious desire for women to be taken care of by others, usually men. ‘Tinderellasyndroom’ would appear to imply that boys can’t flirt, if we assume that boys usually initiate flirting online in the heterosexual sphere. I would read this new word as mainly boys looking for passive, willing women on Tinder-like apps instead of in real life.


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December 17, 2013

‘Selfie’ is the Dutch word of 2013

Filed under: IT,Literature,Online by Orangemaster @ 10:37 am

Another English word has become a Dutch word, as ‘selfie’ has been chosen by the Van Dale dictionary as the Word of the Year 2013. A selfie is a self-portrait taken with a digital camera, smartphone or webcam. A feature of the selfie when taken with a smartphone is that you can see the phone in the picture. The international media is currently swooning over a picture of Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt taking a picture of herself with Barack Obama.

Social 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 ‘ontvrienden’ (‘unfriend’) on Facebook, Twitter and other apps was the winner.

The Van Dale only started inventorying words of the year in 2007 and before that it was done by companies and blogs only going back to 2003. ‘Selfie’, ‘Project-X-feest’ and ‘ontvrienden’ are social media and IT related, while other words stem from traditional media such as ‘gedoogregering’ (a type of minority government that keeps things quiet) (2010). The crowd favourite at parties is ‘swaffelen’ (2008). If you don’t know it, click to read about it.


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December 22, 2012

Winning words, the most popular words of 2012

Filed under: General by Branko Collin @ 2:12 pm

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.

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