If ‘bae’ has you cringing, here’s a list of other equally-overused words that need to stop right now.

Lake Superior State University have released their 40th Annual List of Banished Words, damning the most cringe-worthy words making the rounds right now, and we think they’re pretty spot on.

The list-making began at a Lake Superior State University New Year’s party in 1975 as a bit of fun, but has now become an important point of reference for word-watchers, with over 800 words named and shamed over the years.

One of the top nominees causing the most cringes was ‘bae’, which is an acronym for the phrase “before anyone else” but also misused as a shortened form of babe, which doesn’t really make sense as syllable-wise it’s not any shorter. Don’t feel too out of the loop if you didn’t know what it means, as a Google search of “what does bae mean?” yields over 36 million results.

Another word causing frustration was ‘hack’, which has been criminally overused to the point that any tip or short cut, no matter how unimpressive, now falls under the umbrella term of ‘hack’. Who knows, there are probably even hacks for hacking.

Other words and phrases rubbing the Lake Superior list-makers, either through over-use or sheer obnoxiousness, are:






Cray Cray

Polar vortex

Skill set

Enhanced interrogation

Nation, when used as a sports suffix to refer to a team’s fans (e.g. ‘Broncos Nation’)

Which words are you sick of hearing? Let us know in the comments below!