Die-ins, like this one at Union Station in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 6, were conducted across America to protest grand jury decisions not to indict the police officers who killed Michael Brown and Eric Garner. Linguist Ben Zimmer says that while the word "die-in" isn't new, its increased use makes it a strong candidate for the American Dialect Society's 2014 Word of the Year. Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

Vape was chosen as the word of the year for 2014 in part because it provides a window "onto how we define ourselves," says Casper Grathwohl of the Oxford University Press. Here, women exhale vapor clouds during a competition at the Henley Vaporium in Manhattan. Elizabeth Shafiroff/Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Elizabeth Shafiroff/Reuters/Landov

"Humble brag" is linguist Ben Zimmer's personal favorite for 2011 Â word of the year. Twitter.com/Humblebrag hide caption

itoggle caption Twitter.com/Humblebrag