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2023 words of the year: AI, hallucinate, authentic, and rizz

The top words of 2023 are here! Collins, Cambridge Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, and Oxford have declared AI, hallucinate, authentic, and rizz as their words of the year, respectively. The words reflect the overall shared human experience as we continue to live through unprecedented times.

Collins English Dictionary named AI (artificial intelligence) as their word of the year as it “has accelerated at such a fast pace and become the dominant conversation of 2023.” Truly an understatement as NCRA even published the first of its kind white paper on AI.

For Cambridge Dictionary, the word hallucinate was selected because of the influence artificial intelligence has had on society in the past year — mainly because hallucinate is meant to imply that what is being seen, like a deepfake video, is untrue. It is also because artificial intelligence is just that — artificial, not there.

Merriam-Webster has caught onto the AI trend this past year because it is choosing authentic — as in, is this real or am I hallucinating? In their press release announcing the selection, they wrote “Authentic has a number of meanings including “not false or imitation,” a synonym of real and actual; and also “true to one’s own personality, spirit, or character.” Although clearly a desirable quality, authentic is hard to define and subject to debate — two reasons it sends many people to the dictionary.” Merriam-Webster also had some honorable mentions for 2023 including: rizz, coronation, implode, X, indict, and kibbutz.

Lastly, Oxford announced rizz as their word of the year for 2023. From their #WOTY2023 announcement: “Pertaining to someone’s ability to attract another person through style, charm, or attractiveness, this term is from the middle part of the word ‘charisma’, which is an unusual word formation pattern. Other examples include ‘fridge’ (refrigerator) and ‘flu’ (influenza).”