The New York Times--dean of American newspapers, arbiter of cultural worth--has a problem. They say "hipster." A lot. Over
250 times in the past year, according to Times Topics blogger Philip
. But they're going to try and cut back. Writes Corbett:
latest infatuation with “hipster” seems to go back several years,
perhaps coinciding in part with the flourishing of more colloquial (and
hipper) blogs on our Web site. In 1990 we used the word just 19 times.
That number rose gradually to about 100 by 2000, then exploded to 250 or
so uses a year from 2005 on.
Then there’s the
Brooklyn connection: our archive confirms that Kings County is the very
center of hipsterdom. Ninety-six Times pieces in the past year that
included the word “hipster” also mentioned Brooklyn, edging out even
once-hip Manhattan, which had 87 overlapping mentions. Queens trailed
badly with 33, while the Bronx merited only a handful and Staten Island
In any case, hipster’s second life as hip
slang seems to have lost its freshness. And with so many appearances,
I’m not sure how precise a meaning it conveys. It may still be useful
occasionally, but let’s look for alternatives and try to give it some
Poynter Online commenter Trevor
points out the Times is hardly the first publication to
try to banish hipster from its copy. Gawker tried replacing hipster
with fauxhemian, which "despite its high profile roll out, has been used
but 33 times." In other words, don't expect a miracle.
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