For the first time two words are sharing head rank of Merriam-Webster's most looked up words in 2012, in a most unlikely unity.
Socialism and capitalism have been announced as the online dictionary's most searched words, with their traffic about doubling this year from the year before as the health care debate heated up and discussion intensified over 'American capitalism' versus 'European socialism.'
But according to editor at large Peter Sokolowski, the choice revealed on Wednesday was a 'kind of a no-brainer.'
The side-by-side interest among political candidates and around kitchen tables prompted the dictionary folk to settle on two words of the year rather than one for the first time since the accolade began in 2003.
'They're words that sort of encapsulate the zeitgeist. They're words that are in the national conversation,' said Sokolowski from company headquarters in Springfield, Massachusetts. 'The thing about an election year is it generates a huge amount of very specific interest.'
THE TOP 10 WORDS OF 2012
1. Socialism and capitalism