Founded in 1889, the American Dialect Society is dedicated to the study of the English language in North America together with other languages or dialects of other languages influencing it or influenced by it. For the last 24 years, the Society has selected a Word of the Year from the countless words or phrases nominated for the honor. To be selected as the Word of the Year, a word or phrase must be new or newly popular that year, widely or prominently used, and indicative or reflective of the popular discourse.
“This past year, the very old word 'because' exploded with new grammatical possibilities in informal online use,” said Ben Zimmer, the chair of the dialect society's new words committee. “No longer does 'because' have to be followed by 'of' or a full clause. Now one often sees tersely worded rationales like ‘because science’ or ‘because reasons.’ You might not go to a party ‘because tired.’ As one supporter put it, 'because' should be Word of the Year ‘because useful!’”
I'm not sure when that became a viable rationale, but given the nature of the argument, I'll end with my argument that 'because' should not be the Word of the Year:
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