The Global Language Monitor (no, we hadn't heard of them either) has announced that, according to them, Twitter is the "Top Word of 2009".

The annual global survey of the English language that covers "the English-speaking world" saw Twitter followed by Obama, H1N1, Stimulus, and Vampire.

"In a year dominated by world-shaking political events, a pandemic, the after effects of a financial tsunami and the death of a revered pop icon, the word Twitter stands above all the other words", says Paul JJ Payack, president of The Global Language Monitor.

"Twitter represents a new form of social interaction, where all communication is reduced to 140 characters. Being limited to strict formats did wonders for the sonnet and haiku. One wonders where this highly impractical word-limit will lead as the future unfolds".

The top ten, with the Monitor's own definitions, are listed below.

1.  Twitter - The ability to encapsulate human thought in 140 characters

2.  Obama - The word stem transforms into scores of new words like ObamaCare

3.  H1N1 - The formal (and politically correct) name for Swine Flu

4.  Stimulus - The $800 billion aid package meant to help mend the US economy

5.  Vampire - Vampires are very much en vogue, now the symbol of unrequited love

6.  2.0 - The 2.0 suffix is attached to the next generation of everything

7.  Deficit - Lessons from history are dire warnings here

8.  Hadron - Ephemeral particles subject to collision in the Large Hadron Collider

9.  Healthcare - The direction of which is the subject of intense debate in the US

10.  Transparency - Elusive goal for which many 21st c. governments are striving

11.  Outrage — In response to large bonuses handed out to "bailed-out" companies