“Metaverse” is one of the top contenders for the Oxford Word of the Year for 2022, Oxford University Press (OUP) announced, in a sign that the metaverse is becoming concrete in the public consciousness. Oxford University Press, which publishes the Oxford English Dictionary, announced the three finalist words or terms for 2022 on Tuesday: Metaverse, #IStandWith, and Goblin Mode. “In ‘metaverse’, we see the conceptual future brought into the vernacular in 2022,” OUP wrote. “From hybrid working in VR, to debates over the ethics and feasibility of an entirely online future, usage of this word has quadrupled in October 2022 compared to the same period last year.” Oxford University Press wrote that #IStandWith “recognizes the activism and division that has characterized this year,” and characterized ‘Goblin mode’ as “the idea of rejecting societal expectations put upon us, in favor of doing whatever one wants to.” This year is the first time the general public can participate in choosing the Word of the Year, and they have until Dec. 2 to cast their votes on the Oxford Languages website. At the time of writing, over 267,000 votes have been cast.