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Algospeak: Shashi Tharoor Dives Into Millenial Dictionary Amid 'Unparliamentary' Words Row, Leaves Twitter Impressed

Shashi Tharoor tweeted the word 'Algospeak' as 'Word of the Day' which means using a word on social media posts to avoid using another that algorithms may identify as unsuitable or inappropriate, in order to bypass downranking by content moderation filters on social media platforms,

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Congress MP Shashi Tharoor PTI

Congress leader Shashi Tharoor is known for his gift of gab. The Thiruvananthapuram MP has left many a loquacious word-thrower dumbfounded with his penchant for using tough words like quockerwodger and quomodocunquize. And this time, he has done it again with the word 'Algospeak, Tharoor's latest addition to the Twitter lexicon.

On Wednesday, the Congress leader shared the meaning of his "word of the day" on the microblogging site. "Algospeak (noun): word used on social media posts to avoid using another that algorithms may identify as unsuitable or inappropriate, in order to bypass downranking by content moderation filters on social media platforms. Eg. using 'unalive' rather than 'dead'," Tharoor tweeted.


The post comes in the wake of a political slugfest after the a booklet released by the  Lok Sabha Secretariat recently deemed a number of commonly used words as parliamentary. While not commenting directory on the matter, Tharoor responded to a Twitter post, which said that for "word" troubles there is Shashi Tharoor. The post had some of the words that were recently banned in Parliament and their replacements that included tough, rarely used words, that are Tharoor's forte.

"Not my doing but quite clever!" Tharoor tweeted, tagging the post.

Both Tharoor's posts have gone viral on social media with many on Twitter reminiscing the multiple occasions when Tharoor's words have sent Twitterati scurrying for their dictionaries to confirm whether such words indeed exist. 

Many pointed out that now "algospeak" is what Tharoor and other Opposition leaders will have to do in Parliament to get around the ban on "unparliamentary" words. 


Not one to stay behind times, Tharoor also keeps sharing younger or more "millennial" words such as "doomscrolling" or today's "algospeak" on his social feeds. A couple of months ago, Tharoor had shared his "word of the era" - doomscrolling. The word refers. tothe "increased consumption of predominantly negative news could have psychological ill effects, in addition to causing political depression". 

Earlier in May, Tharoor had taken a dig at the Ministry of Railways with a difficult-to-pronounce head-scratcher -- quomodocunquize.

"To make money by any means possible," the meaning posted by him had said. Before that he had posted the word quockerwodger.

"A quockerwodger was a type of wooden puppet. In politics, a quockerwodger was a politician acting on the instructions of an influential third party, rather than properly representing their constituents," he had said.

In the past, he has stumped people with words and phrases such as 'exasperating farrago of distortions' and 'troglodyte'.

While 'farrago' means a confused mixture, 'troglodyte' means a person regarded as being deliberately ignorant or old-fashioned.

(With inputs from PTI)

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