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Naming the decade that’s going

Let the record show that during the early 1990s, I was pushing for calling the coming decade The Aughties. According to an amusing piece by Rebecca Mead in The New Yorker, that’s one of the leading contenders, although the article explains that it’s actually corruption of the word. I didn’t know! Forgive me!

So, I still don’t know what we should call these past ten years. The Aughties? The Oh-Ohs? The Balloon Years? The Netcade? Millenium 3.0?

And, yes, you do detect a bit of desperation in my tone. That’s because unless we find a name that actually works, I’m going to continue in my head to think of these as The Bush Years oh lord oh no. You don’t want a decade whose name requires you to take the Lord’s name in vain immediately after saying it.

Anyway, here’s hoping our Twenty-Teens are better than this decade has been!

8 Responses to “Naming the decade that’s going”

  1. You assume (I guess) your readers have read the boringly dark proposition:

    Thank you for the hope and optimism in the last paragraph. It’s all we have (couldn’t find a less boring way of saying it).

  2. Hah. Nope, hadn’t seen it. But Doc Searls was there first with The Giant Zero as a way of understanding the Net.

  3. I created a name for this decade in 1999. My word not only creates a way to group the numbers between 0 and 9, the years between 2000 and 2009, it also give a meaning to what this decade represented.

    Before I begin my word, I will been referrenced in TIME magazine Man of the Year issue and in the Miami Herald.

    The Unies! As in Twenty-Unies (20-00s) Uni is a Latin prefix that means one.
    The numbers between 0 and 9 are all one-digit. Uni is also a prefix that means to come together to make one, like uniformity and university which is a collection of colleges.

    The Unies can be used for the decade pronunciation as in the Unies or Twenty-Unies. It also can be used for ages, as in I’m in my thirties and my little sister is in her unies. It may also be used for temperatures, as in the temperatures will get cold tonight in the low- to mid-unies.

    Now, I will use it to describe what this decade represented. The Unification of the Unies.

    During this decade we saw the rise of the Euro.
    We saw the growth of file sharing via Napster (introduced in mid-1999). We saw the world’s religions come together to memoralize the September 11th tragedy. We saw the birth of open-source, best example is Wikipedia. We saw the growth of Google and the organization of the internet through search engines.
    We saw the rise of Social Media including Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, Myspace, Digg and blogs. The tracking and documenting of flu viruses that spread like Swine Flu. We saw the election of President Obama and the unifying of races and classes all while his campaign used social media.

    The Unification of the Unies has made the world a smaller place. We’ve become more connected with the world then ever before. Blogs, comments and reviews have made media people more connected with their readers. We saw how companies are able to communicate with their customers via websites and blogs. The rise of the Euro helped unify the European monetary system. This decade represented the unifying of the world.

    The next decade should be pronounced the Decies. Deci is a Latin prefix that means ten. The numbers between 10 and 19 all have ten in common.

  4. May I suggest the i-ties.

  5. I like the “Unies” as the word. But the unification it implies has not yet happened then – it was only started then, hence some name that transmitts “pre-” state would be better. Preunies does not sound good though…

    Emil – thx for the link. I wonder how Krugman could call it: “It was decade in which nothing good happened” …

  6. The only NUMERICAL & MNEMONICALLY correct phrases to name the century’s first decade are AUGHTIES, NAUGHTIES, NAUGHTS, AUGHTS or NAUGHTY AUGHTIES.

    A few suggestions use one or more specific events that occurred during the decade. They will probably never be used from a radio and broadcasting point of view because they do not encompass this whole decade and they aren’t pleasing to the ear. Radio stations introduce their programming along the lines of “Music from the 80s, 90s and Today”. Soon, they’ll be replacing it with “Music from the 90s (NineTIES), ______TIES and Today”. The best choices contain either AUGHTIES, NAUGHTIES, NAUGHTY AUGHTIES, NAUGHTS or AUGHTS. Using events usually requires one to use adages like “The Age of” or “Era” which is more descriptive of a time period, not necessarily an actual decade. There is a huge difference between what a decade is “remembered for” versus what a decade is “referred to as”. Many suggestions (Age of Confusion, , Era of Misplaced Anxiety, Decade of Disruptions, North goes South, etc) do NOT pass this simple litmus test. Any suggestion that would require you to be a history buff in the future, shouldn’t even be considered.

    The media needs to embrace the only viable choice from a NUMERICAL & MNEMONICAL point of view. The first decade of previous generations did not have this sense of urgency as mass marketing really didn’t exist. The mass marketing concept was introduced to the public with the advent of radio broadcasting of the mid 1920’s (Roaring Twenties) and heightened in the 1940’s with television accessibility.

    Why Naughty Aughties? We NEED an identifier. Not many people can pinpoint the actual years of Generation X and Generation Y, the Stone Age or the Industrial Revolution. Naughty Aughties and its offshoots leave no doubt to this identity as “naught” and “aught” both mean zero. Jazzing up “Naught” to “Naughty” and combining it with “Aughties”, inadvertently describes the tone of the first decade that includes the Years 2000-2009. Marketing sense tells us that the 00’s are not memorable enough nor are they appealing to the public. Naughty Aughties is simple, catchy, rhymes and intimates fun and mischievous behavior, as well as being sweet and sexy. Previous decades are easily identifiable and well marketed, but until now, there seemed to be no cohesion for the years 2000-2009. Naughty Aughties fills the void in a fun and “roll off your tongue” sort of way.

    Obviously, many “naughty” things have occurred in the entertainment, political, sporting and economic arenas from global, national and local perspectives that may depict our moral compass. Jackson’s Superbowl Half-time show, OJ Simpson, Britney Spears, Enron, Martha Stewart, Cheney and Clinton are just a few highlights. Can you come up with more? Sure, you can!

  7. I figured the answer to this question out several years ago. How? I asked a class of students. We listed suggestions on the white board and voted. The votes were unanimous:

    The 2000’s

    Doesn’t make sense really but that is what it was called, at least in real time. After this I noticed it used in print too.

  8. A lot of people are still debating what to call the first decade of the 21st Century. Some one like the Unies as a word but not it’s meaning. To that I want to state: The first decade saw the world become unified more than any other decade through technology. Facebook, Twitter and many other social media sites we created during this decade. It seems that the Unification of the Unies ushered in a new connected world.

    People will debate until they’re blue in the face but no one can deny this represented the first decade more than anything else.

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