Subprime Chosen as Word of the Year for 2007

Chicago–The American Dialect Society chose “subprime” as 2007’s word of the year at an early January voting session in Chicago, The BBC reports.The risky-loan banking term made headlines–literally–last year as the U.S. home loan market collapse spurred a global credit crisis.Subprime, which is defined as “less than ideal,” beat out Facebook, water-boarding and Googleganger for the title.The linguist society notes words or phrases that have become popular in a given year. “When you have investment companies losing billions of dollars over something like bundled subprime loans, then you have to consider whether it’s important,” said American Dialect Society spokesman Wayne Glowka.Founded in 1889, the American Dialect Society studies the English language in North America. Its members include academics and amateurs, teachers and writers.