The ‘Heart’ Emoji was the World’s Most Popular Word of 2014

A new list by the Global Language Monitor, that analyzes social media, blogs, and 275,000 print and electronic publications to determine its ranking, has revealed that the ‘heart’ emoji was the most commonly used word in the English language this year, BusinessInsider is reporting. GLM notes that the ‘heart’ emoji was used billions of times a day around the globe, making it the first time in the ranking’s 15-year history that a symbol has earned the top honours.


The source notes that even though words like “the” were used way more frequently than some of the words on the list, GLM’s rankings filters words that impact language in the news and global discussion. To qualify for the list, the words had to be used at least 25,000 times globally, and also had to be used across industries and in several different forms of media. While the ‘heart’ emoji topped the list, “Hashtag” came in second, and “vape” was third.

Here’s the complete list of top words for 2014:

  1. The Heart Emoji (for love) — People usually use the heart emoji to express love or warm feelings.
  2. Hashtag — A repurposed pound sign, still powerful thanks to Twitter and Instagram.
  3. Vape — Short for vaporize, or vaping, the act of smoking an electronic or e-cigarette.
  4. Blood Moon — Four total eclipses of the moon in an eighteen-month span. Some Christians see it as presaging a lunar apocalypse.
  5. Nano — From Greek for dwarf, small; now 1 billionth of a meter. It’s used in any number of words surrounding nano technology.
  6. Photobomb — Breaking into a photograph without permission.
  7. Caliphate — A land ruled by an Islamic Caliph, typically governed under Sharia Law.
  8. Privilege — The alleged advantages of having lighter colored skin in a diverse society.
  9. Bae — A millennial’s term of endearment.
  10. “Bash” Tag — Co-opting a brand’s hashtag to undermine it.
  11. Transparency — A state of openness, usually used in reference to the government.
  12. Sustainable — Environmentally conscious lifestyle choices.
  13. Clickbait — A link structured so that you just have to click on it.
  14. Quindecennial — Fifteen-year anniversary of an event.
  15. Comet — Comet 67p had a visitor from the Rosetta Spacecraft this fall.
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