It’s official, folks, ‘Sheeple‘ is now a word in the Merriam-Webster dictionary.
You may be thinking that it’s odd to add words like these as they sound way too informal, but dictionary organizations are always on the hunt for new words based on how popular they are in various forms on physical online and physical print.
As there is limited space in the Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary for instance, the authors would look for how often a word is cited and by whom. Here’s a more detailed breakdown on how they consider what should be included in their dictionary.
Sheeple (an informal definition) describes “people who are docile, compliant, or easily influenced : people likened to sheep.”
With any word, comes a sentence example to explain its usage. Here’s one of the two that were used.
“Apple’s debuted a battery case for the juice-sucking iPhone—an ungainly lumpy case the sheeple will happily shell out $99 for. — Doug Criss”
Before taking offense, it should be noted the Merriam-Webster themselves are not referring to Apple fans as sheeple. The reference was actually drawn from a CNN article written by Doug Criss.
Let’s face it. The word ‘sheeple’ is referenced a lot when it comes to Apple and its loyal fan base. However, we’d hope that Apple enthusiasts don’t take too much offense as the dictionary is simply making a reference to a citation of authority to demonstrate how the word is used.