Embargoed until Monday, December 19: 2011: It was a munted year
The Public Address Readers' Word of the Year for 2011 is "munted".
Readers of the popular local group blog site Public Address (publicaddress.net) discuss and vote annually for the word(s) they feel best characterise the year.
The sheer quantity of news in 2011 -- both good and bad -- saw a record number of words proposed in the discussion phase. Those were culled to a final 44 nominees for online voting.
The Top 10 words are:
2. nek minnit
3. ghost chips
4. = #eqnz
7. Arab Spring
"The word 'munted' isn't new," said Public Address founder Russell Brown, "But it felt like this was the year it found its destiny. 'Munted', in spirit and in sound, was the natural word for what happened to parts of Christchurch in the February earthquake. And when Mayor Bob Parker told journalists 'Our main sewer trunk is seriously munted. I believe that is the technical term,' that destiny was settled."
But the race for the top slot was close, with only a handful of points separating "munted" and Levi Hawken's popular "nek minnit" catchphrase.
"The strong showing by 'nek minnit' suggests the rush to declare it 'over' when Kim Hill said 'nek minnit' in a promo for her radio show was misguided," said Brown.
"Munted" was not the only word associated with the Christchurch earthquakes to feature in the Top 10. The #eqnz hashtag tied with "Occupy" for fourth, and liquefaction and red-stickered also featured.
"The strong vote for 'ghost chips' will please the New Zealand Transport Agency," said Brown. "Any public service campaign aims to get that degree of currency -- and our readers aren't even in the ad's target demographic."
The first Public Address reader to propose "munted" and one reader picked at random from the hundreds who voted have won a special Christmas hamper from Nosh and a case of Grower's Mark sauvignon blanc.
Russell Brown can be contacted for further comment on the Public Address Word of the Year 2011 via the little email button below.