The Oxford Dictionary defines the word Gif as: "a lossless format for compressing image files". It's a noun, a computing term and the official 2012 US Oxford Word of the Year.
Gif beat out words like Eurogeddon, Higgs boson, Super PAC, and superstorm to take the crown this year. Unsurprisingly, Gif also beat out Yolo (You Only Live Once). Which as many of you know is not a word, or a good way to live your life.
Oxford picked Gif as its word of the year because, according to them, it has become very trendy this year. In fact, it even started being used as a verb. As in, "He Gifed the highlights of the debate" or "I just Gifed you doing the Gangnam Style dance".
Gif first entered the lexicon in 1987. It originally started out its life being called "graphic interchange format" but quickly became an acronym when it was decided that three words is too many to pronounce.
With its victory, Gif joins the ranks of previous Word of the Year winners such "squeezed middle" and "tweet".
Meanwhile, the award for the UK Word of the Year went to "Omnishambles" - a celebration of government incompetence originating on the satirical TV show The Thick of It.
13 Nov 2012