• Germany edition
 
'Victim subscription' worst phrase of 2012
Photo: DPA

'Victim subscription' worst phrase of 2012

Published: 15 Jan 2013 12:23 GMT+01:00
Updated: 15 Jan 2013 12:23 GMT+01:00

Jörg Kachelmann, a famous weather presenter on German television claimed in several interviews last autumn that women in Germany had the tendency to repeated make false claims of crimes such as rape, to further their interests.

The organizers of the Unwort des Jahres (un-word of the year) selected Opfer-Abo as it "unacceptably puts women under general suspicion of inventing sexual violence and of thus being perpetrators themselves."

The jury said this was factually grossly inaccurate - in the face of the dramatic statistics which show that only between five and eight percent of women who have experienced sexual violence actually report it to the police and that just three to four percent of cases which are officially reported lead to a court case.

Expressions like this threaten to warp further the way in which society deals with sexual violence, the jury said.

Kachelmann was accused of rape by his former lover - and in a case which was watched by the nation, was eventually acquitted.

The word Opfer-Abo was joined by Pleite-Griechen (broke Greeks) in the worst top three new German words of the year. This was a phrase frequently used during 2012 by tabloid newspapers such as Bild, the jury said. It defamed an entire nation, including those Greeks living in Germany, in an unfair and unqualified fashion, they said.

The final word in the top three was Lebensleistungsrente (life achievement pension), which the jury described as a confusing or even cynical description for the plan to introduce a very limited state-funded addition to general pension payments.

This complex word exploits the content of "life achievement" in order to sell a minimally useful measure against old-age poverty, the jury said.

Previous words named the worst of the year include "kebab-murders," a phrase used by police and many Germany media to describe the murders of eight ethnic Turkish and one Greek which turned out to be the work of a gang of terrorist neo-Nazis.

The Local/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

13:30 January 15, 2013 by The-ex-pat
Just goes to show how dumb to the world I am. When I read the headline and saw the cut out letters, I thought this was about people who sign a magazine subscription just to get rid of the salesman on the door step.......Just how my wife ended up with a weekly TV guide......well, you live and learn.......

How ever I would nominate any English word that has "Ge" added to it. For example, Shopped or landed which become Geshopped or Gelanded, which is the equivalent of writing edshopped or edlanded, having the word begin and end with "ed".............lol
15:11 January 15, 2013 by Harrow
It's not the same as 'having the word begin and end with "ed"', as the German past tense is (most commonly) formed with the "ge" at the start of the word and the "et" at the end of it, saying shoppt/landet instead of geshoppt/gelandet would mean something different...........lol
00:13 January 16, 2013 by gwenness
Geskyped, Gegoogled, etc *facepalm*
09:33 January 16, 2013 by HansT
It seems that what it takes to make the "Unwort" list is in failing to be politically correct here in our 'modern' times. Which means, of course, to tell the truth which may push a few 'hot button' fools into fainting spells. (Oh, the humanity....)
10:53 January 16, 2013 by The-ex-pat
00:13 January 16, 2013 by gwenness

Geskyped, Gegoogled, etc *facepalm*

Don't you mean...............................Gefacepalmed....
Today's headlines
Fourth time lucky for free Berlin WiFi?
Coming soon? Photo: DPA

Fourth time lucky for free Berlin WiFi?

Berlin's bid to set up a free city-wide wireless network has so far come to nothing. But city bosses are now trying for a fourth time - and hope to have the project running next year. READ  

Opinion
Do German unions have too much power?
Lufthansa passengers rush to change their flights at Frankfurt Airport on Monday. Photo: DPA

Do German unions have too much power?

Germany's pilots and train drivers are taking it in turns to bring the country to a standstill with strikes that have cost the economy tens of millions of euros in the last two weeks. Are unions abusing their power or standing up for their rights? READ  

Older workers can have extra days off, court says
Photo: Workers in a German shoe factory. Photo: DPA

Older workers can have extra days off, court says

Older workers in Germany are allowed more time off than younger ones, a court ruled on Tuesday, saying the difference was not discriminatory. READ  

Expat's family battles for answers four years on
Matthew Fitzpatrick died in 2010 in Mannheim. Photo: Fitzpatrick family

Expat's family battles for answers four years on

In 2010 an Irish computer engineer was found dead in his apartment in Baden-Württemberg. Four years on, his family are still pressing the German justice system for answers. They feel badly let down by police who they say have refused to examine evidence of foul play. READ  

Court: Germany can keep arms deals secret
The judges of the Supreme Court announce their decision about weapons exports on Tuesday. Photo: DPA

Court: Germany can keep arms deals secret

The government can keep arms deals secret and only tell the public about them after contracts have been signed, the Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday. READ  

Tourist finds €7,500 instead of cheesecake

Tourist finds €7,500 instead of cheesecake

Just how honest would you have to be to return €7,500 that you found in a box supposed to contain your favourite cheesecake? READ  

Tanker fills up gas station with wrong fuel
Photo: DPA

Tanker fills up gas station with wrong fuel

Around 160 car owners are stuck after a gas station's storage tanks were filled with the wrong fuel, causing an estimated €100,000 in damage. READ  

Lufthansa strike hits 1,500 flights
Photo: DPA

Lufthansa strike hits 1,500 flights

UPDATE: In the second day of their strike, Lufthansa pilots have, as promised, extended their industrial action to include long-haul international flights until the end of Tuesday. READ  

Merkel tells allies to pay Ukraine's gas debts
Chancellor Angela Merkel in Bratislava, Slovakia, on Monday. Photo: DPA

Merkel tells allies to pay Ukraine's gas debts

Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday called on Ukraine's allies to help the war-scarred nation pay off its gas debts to Russia, amid concern over gas supplies this winter. READ  

Steinmeier wants epidemic task force
Frank-Walter Steinmeier speaks at the World Health Summit in Berlin. Photo: DPA

Steinmeier wants epidemic task force

At the World Health Summit in Berlin, the Ebola crisis took centre stage at talks meant to create plans for how to handle future outbreaks. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: Mariana Schroeder
Munich
Special Report: Hope and chaos at Munich's refugee shelters
Photo: DPA
Berlin
Robbers blow up Berlin bank
Photo: DPA
Culture
Can you top our history quiz leaderboard?
Photo: Facebook
Society
German motorcycle gang joins Isis fight
Photo: DPA
Politics
UKIP ‘seeks EU pact’ with German satirical party
Photo: DPA
Gallery
PHOTOS: World's biggest erotic fair opens in Berlin
Photo: DPA/Shutterstock
Gallery
11 things Germans are afraid of...
Sponsored Article
International School on the Rhine: a legacy
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The ten richest people in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Sponsored Article
Bilingual education from nursery to graduation at Phorms
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,478
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd