Global Language Monitor Announces That ‘Truth’ is the Top Word in the English Language for the 21st Century


Rise of China Now Top News Story of the 21st Century


PRESS RELEASE  DEC 30, 2019 10:00 EST

AUSTIN, Texas, December 30, 2019 ( - Global Language Monitor, the worldwide leader in the documentation, analysis, and tracking of trends in the English language worldwide, has announced that “Truth” is the Top Word in the English Language for the 21st Century.

Truth (and No. 2 Progress) both far outdistanced the other words in contention, including sustainability, extinction, and Internet. Climate change was followed by (the rise of) China, while Global warming, Twitter and Google followed.  

The first twenty years of the 20th century already set the trajectory for the remainder of the century. The first World War had already concluded as had the Bolshevik Revolution. The seeds of World War II were sown as was the rise of Communism, German Nationalism, the carving up of the Middle East without regard to societal structures, total warfare, the introduction of weapons of mass destruction, flight, electrification of rural areas, the internal combustion engine, the dependence on hydrocarbon for fuel, Einstein’s first papers on relativity, the arms race, the explosive growth of cities, and so much more.

What do the Top Words of the 21st Century portend?

See the Google Ngram depicting the dominance of Truth and Progress over the other eight words in the Top Words of the Century list.

The second Google Ngram depicts the relative closeness in the ranking for Nos. 3 to 10.

Global Language Monitor began recording the Top Words of the Year in 2000 to document the history of the 21st Century through English language usage, the world’s first truly global language. The words are culled throughout the English-speaking world, which as of January 2018 ranks more than 2.58 billion speakers. Global Language Monitor employs its NarrativeTracker technologies for global internet and social media analysis.

NarrativeTracker is based on global discourse, providing a real-time, accurate picture about any topic, at any point in time. NarrativeTracker analyzes the internet, blogosphere, and the top 300,000 print and electronic global media as well as new social media sources as they emerge.

Global Language Monitor has also provided a list of the Top 20 Trending Words of the Year for 2019 ranked to date.

The Top Ten Words for the Twenty-first Century for Global English with commentary follow.

  1. Truth – Despite the cries of impending doom echoing ever more loudly throughout the young century, or perhaps because of them, Truth rings out ever more clearly.
  2. Progress – Though it was the Top Decliner for 2019, progress in Martin Luther King’s words might just follow his arc: “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice”.
  3. Sustainability – Sustainable topped the charts some thirteen years ago and now it is strengthening still. 
  4. Extinction – The highest ranking ever for this impending catastrophe of the on-coming Sixth Great Extinction.
  5. Internet – Many interviewed thought that the web or internet would reign supreme; the numbers, however, did not bear them out.
  6. Climate change – Ranked higher in individual years but always in the top ten.
  7. (The rise of) China – The Top News Story of the first decade of the century, and now the Top News story of the Twenty-first century thus far.
  8. Global warming – People aren’t quite sure what they should call what’s happening to the planet.  Please bear in mind that when the original Native Americans crossed the Bering Land Bridge, the oceans were 300 feet lower than today. Add in the hand of man of the Anthropocene and the consequences only become that much more dire.
  9. Twitter – A decade ago we mentioned that Twitter was more than a child’s toy but, rather ominously, a potential weapon of mass disruption (or even destruction).
  10. Google — One of the most transformative tools the species has yet achieved.

About Global Language Monitor

Based in Austin, Texas, the Global Language Monitor collectively documents, analyzes and tracks trends in language usage worldwide, with a particular emphasis upon the English language. The company is known for its Word of the Year, political analysis, college and university rankings, high-tech buzzwords, and media analytics. For more information, visit

Media Contact:
​Paul JJ Payack

Source: Global Language Monitor


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