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INSTA-WORDS

The year is not quite three months old, but already the “Top Trending Words of 2013” have been identified by the Global Language Monitor, a Texas-based research group that uses software-aided analysis to determine words most frequently cited in 250,000 print and online news sources.

The winners are an odd but topical mix: Kate’s royal offspring, near-Earth objects, nukes, Internet meme, China, #hashtag, and catastrophic scenarios with names containing the prefix ‘franken’ or the suffix ‘pocalypse.’

“The year 2013 looks to be another vibrant year for the English language with word creation again driven by events both scheduled and unanticipated,” says chief analyst Paul JJ Payack. “With 1.83 billion speakers and a new word created every 98 minutes or so, clever, interesting, and creative neologisms inevitably appear — and now, from any point on the planet.”

POLL DU JOUR

• 58 percent of Americans say stricter gun laws would make it more difficult to protect home and family; 77 percent of Republicans and 44 percent of Democrats agree.

• 57 percent overall say stricter laws give more power to government over average citizens; 76 percent of Republicans and 38 percent of Democrats agree.

• 54 percent overall say more laws would reduce the number of mass shootings; 29 percent of Republicans and 79 percent of Democrats agree.

• 52 percent say more laws would reduce numbers of accidental gun deaths; 32 percent of Republicans and 74 percent of Democrats agree.

• 51 percent say more laws would keep guns out of criminals’ hands; 31 percent of Republicans and 73 percent of Democrats agree.

Source: A Pew Research Center poll of 1,504 U.S. adults conducted Feb. 13 to 18 and released Tuesday.

• Cheers, jeers, fears to jharper@washingtontimes.com.