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Poll says "Y2K' should be banished

Are you about ready to hurt somebody if you hear mention of the acronym "Y2K" one more time?

The term being used to describe the year 2000 _ and the glitch that's supposed to confuse computers so that, say, the bank could transfer $1-million to our account by mistake and no one would be the wiser _ has worn out its welcome.

Y2K topped the 23rd annual list of words that should be banished, according to Michigan's Lake Superior State University.

"It's already so overused I believe people's eyes glaze over when confronted with it," said John Charles Robbins, a columnist for the Petoskey News-Review.

Lake Superior State releases the list each Jan. 1 from submissions gathered from academia, advertising, business, journalism, the military, politics and sports.

Other words and phrases on this year's list:

+ The "-gate" construction: Used to describe scandals, especially those that occur in Washington, such as Filegate, Monicagate, Zippergate.

+ "Stun": Overused in sports stories. Example: "Canucks stun Wings." The Wings may have been angry, disappointed or frustrated, but probably not stunned.

+ "Courtesy call": As if unsolicited sales calls are ever a courtesy.

+ "Ask for it by name": As if there's any other way.

+ "So": As in the phrase most beloved by teenagers, "I'm so not going there."

Thrilling Michael Jackson

video takes top spot in poll

Michael Jackson's Thriller was chosen by music fans on Friday as the best pop video ever made.

The landmark 1983 video, given its British premiere on a late-night television slot, defeated Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody and Take On Me by A-Ha in the poll conducted by VH1.

"It was the first time an artist had considered the pop video as a legitimate art form. And people have been copying it ever since," said a spokesman for the channel after almost 100,000 viewers phoned in for the poll.

_ Compiled from Times wires