Word Contest

"Red state, blue state, purple state" voted 2004's top phrase by linguists

A panel of linguists has deemed "red state, blue state, purple state" the phrase that most colored the nation's lexicon in 2004. Participants at the annual convention of the Linguistic Society of America in Oakland, California, chose the word or phrase that dominated national discourse over the course of the last year. The phrase "red state, blue state, purple state" represents the American political map. The term defines red as favoring Republicans, blue as favoring Democrats and purple showing swing or undecided states. Other nominees for word of the year were: flip-flopper, a politician who changes political stances; meet-up, a local special interest meeting organized though a national Web site; mash-up, a blend of two songs or albums into a single cohesive musical work; and wardrobe malfunction, an unanticipated exposure of bodily parts.

This was the 15th year of the contest, sponsored by the American Dialect Society.