Pluto may no longer be a planet, but it has a new claim to fame: “Plutoed” has been chosen 2006 Word of the Year by the American Dialect Society.
The society defined “to pluto” as “to demote or devalue someone or something, as happened to the former planet Pluto when the General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union decided Pluto no longer met its definition of a planet.”
“Plutoed” won in a runoff against “climate canary,” defined as “an organism or species whose poor health or declining numbers hint at a larger environmental catastrophe on the horizon.”
The runner-up was “macaca” or “macaca moment,” defined as “treating an American citizen as an alien” — a reference to a campaign remark by former Virginia Sen. George Allen that some say marked the beginning of the end for his re-election hopes.
Also in the running for Word of the Year were YouTube; surge (referring to a large, but brief, increase in troop strength); and flog (“a fake blog created by a corporation to promote a product or a television show”).