Omicron — By Tommy Purser
Okay, folks. Let’s talk about omicron.
Is it OH-muh-kraan, AH-muh-krann, OH-my-Kraan, or o-MIKE-Ron.
According to Merriam Webster, Omicron is pronounced “OH-muh-kraan” or “AH-muh-kraan.” In British English, it is “OH-my-kraan.”
The New Oxford English Dictionary offers a different pronunciation: o-MIKE-Ron.
The word made it onto this year’s list of most mispronounced words, as compiled by the U.S. Captioning Company, which captions and subtitles real-time events on TV and in courtrooms.
The list identifies the words that proved most challenging for newsreaders and people on television to pronounce.
In my business, all I have to do is know how to spell it. Watching television and listening to radio, I find myself amused at how different people prefer different pronunciations of omicron.
That list of most challenging words included:
– Chipotle (chih-POHT-lay): The American fast food chain.
– Dogecoin (DOHJ-coin): A cryptocurrency popularized by Elon Musk.
– Eilish (EYE-lish): The singer Billie Eilish, whose album “Happier Than Ever” was released this year to critical acclaim and nominated for the Grammy Awards’ Album of the Year.
– Ever Given (EV-er GIV-en): The name of the ship that blocked the Suez Canal. Many newscasters mistook the name of the ship as “Evergreen,” the name of the company that owns the vessel, which was printed on its hull.
– Glasgow (GLAHZ-go): The host city of November’s United Nations Climate Conference.
– Kelce (KELs): The Philadelphia Eagles center Jason Kelce.
– Stefanos Tsitsipas (STEH-fuh-nohs TSEE-tsee-pas): Currently ranked as the world’s No. 4 tennis player.
In case anyone cares, I’m going with “AH-muh-kran.”
But I could be wrong.