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What To Name … This Decade

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2005 is almost over. That’s six years of this decade. And it hit me last night — we as a society have failed to come up with a name for this decade.

The eighties. The nineties. The … um … “this decade.” It’s almost like when you start to refer to it, you convince yourself you know what to call it, then hesitate and bail out to … “this decade.” It’s cute, actually.

We’ve granted ourselves a free pass because … “this decade” is the first one of the new century. So during the nascent years of …. “this decade” we were able to ride the “new century” and “new millennium” escalator to the pinnacle of hip, young dialogue! Cowabunga.

But we’re almost into the seventh year of this decade, and we have yet to decide on a good moniker for this ten year chunk of time.

So no more pussyfooting around. Let’s do this right now.

• Once in a while I’ve heard this decade being called The 2000s, because little do they realize that this is a horrible name for a decade. We’re going to be in the 2000s long after this decade ends, and people will be all confused.

A historian in the future: “The 2000s was a turbulent decade. So turbulent, in fact, that it lasted a thousand years.”

Likelihood of withstanding the test of time: 5 percent, only because we may invent a time machine that warps us to the year 3000, in which case that decade alias would be accurate.

• If you wanted to go continue on with the standard numbers, The Zeroes would make the most sense mathematically, provided they can work out a licensing agreement with the Houston Texans.

• If a weatherman were to decide the name, he may opt for The Single Digits, for when he (incorrectly) predicts the temperature, he may say “the low 60s” or “the high 30s.” When it gets to severe cold temperatures — the level where nipples turn to the firmness and shape of stale candy corn — your local meteorologist will refer to “the single digits.” Then again, he may not. Instead he may say “the high 80s” just to screw with everyone’s heads.

The shortcoming of this name is that The Single Digits has no suave abbreviation. The Sing Digs? No, those are our friendly neighbors who own that Chinese restaurant. The SDs is way too obscure, plus it’s one stutter away from becoming two nasty concepts — SBDs or STDs.

• For those who want a vintage feel on a new sensation, The Aughts is a popular choice. This name gets my vote of confidence, which in the grand scheme of things means it will never happen. But ever since I’ve suffered from out-of-shape college graduate intermittent back pain and ranted about the days before iPods and TiVo (1999), I’ve taken on the of neo-geezer and began pining on the classic World Series of aught-one, my college graduation in aught-five and the Great Super Smash Brothers Melee Marathon of aught-three.

You’d think with two new Supreme Court judge vacancies to fill this year, one of these Senators would throw a question to either nominee about how they would interpret the official name of this decade.

If you don’t believe it’s within the rights — nay, the duties — of our government to worry about something seemingly frivolous like the name of a period in history, then you’re probably jealous that you don’t get to make laws. Politicians have legislated so much on our people, places and ideas, they got their grubby hands on our time! Yes, they were the ones who implemented daylight savings, a method of manipulating the time of the day! What a power trip!

Write to your local congressperson and have them propose a name for this decade. Because, after all, the minute 2010 strolls around VH1 will be wanting to do another compilation show, and they already have it partially named: I Love The —.

But perhaps we’re not ready to name it. After all, it took a while for the media to come to an agreement on what to call 9/11. “The World Trade Center bombings” wasn’t specific enough. “Terrorist Jenga” was just plan wrong (but descriptive!) And “The justification for the war in Iraq” is — oh shit, the Daily Kos just pinged me. So they simply went with the date it happened. September 11th. Nine-eleven. The digit nine, followed by a slash or hyphen, followed by consecutive ones.

Perhaps that is what we’ll resort to calling … this decade. The years between and including 2000-2009. It doesn’t flow, but it’s rather accurate and unambiguous.

I may have not decided on any fresh young title for our decade, but keep in mind I’m old-fashioned and that’s the way I like it. Now get off my lawn.

Matthew T. “Matt” Sussman is pretty sure The Zeroes, The Sing Digs and The Aughts are all names of garage bands somewhere.

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  • eclectric

    2001-2010 the space oddity decade

  • Jon LG

    The To Owe’s

  • Mary Given

    Name this decade the “Double Naughts” (00)due to all taxpaper money gone, ponzie schemes, Wall Street failures, no end to war, no jobs for anyone, double whammy to USA prestige abroad and on and on…….

  • Maggie LaNoue

    This past decade could properly be called the TwentiOs. There is a facebook fan page for the name, and a logo. The naming convention will also work in previous and future centuries if you read the info on the page. Search on Facebook for TwentiOs.

  • The new name of this past decade is the TwentiOs.
    Please spread the word.

  • Niggatron

    Name for our new decade? “The Endies” as in soon to come to an end. Yeah I made the word “endies” up, go fuck yourself.

  • perma

    The ‘Duped Decade”…Iraq, Wall St, Tiger Woods, John Edwards, Steroids,Bernie Madoff…man fell for everything and questioned nothing!

  • blah

    James Bond all the way. I’m calling the decade the Double 0’s.

  • shane

    Its 2009 by the time i write this. I have known the past 9 years as the ”Naughties”

    as in the ‘0’ not the bad sense!

    My main question in 2010-2012, after that we can say teenies or summin like that, but what about 2010-2012?

  • jill

    It’s called the “Ones” I learned that in first grade…. the ones,the teens, the 20’s and so on…..

  • “What To Name… This Decade?”


  • Princeton

    I call this decade the “Ohties”, to me it seems well ok lol, 01, 02, 03, 04 etc…well thats my opinion.

  • Emily


  • Alan Hagdorn

    Zeroties Ze • rot • ies
    • This decade (2000-2009) needs a name and Zeroties is it.
    • Like the Twenties, Thirties, Forties, Fifties, Sixties, Seventies, Eighties, and Nineties, Zeroties follows the pattern.
    • Zeroties is up against one other candidate name – Aughties/Oughties. This British word “aught” means zero and does not appeal to Americans. (As a hidden bonus, when you say Zeroties, you hear “Aughties” in the middle.)
    • Zeroties makes sense because zero has been a very dominant idea and word in this decade.
    • Zeroties “says” zero ties the decade together… …and it really does.
    • Once everyone sees the need for and usefulness of the word Zeroties, it will win their hearts and minds.
    • Zero has been my hero ever since School House Rocks declared it so. Ever since kindergarten, zero has rolled off our rounded lips.
    • “The Babylonians invented it, the Greeks banned it, the Hindus worshiped it, and the Church used it to fend off heretics. For centuries, the power of zero savored of the demonic; once harnessed, it became the most important tool in mathematics. Today, zero lies at the heart of one of the biggest controversies of all time, the quest for the theory of everything.” Charles Seife (2000) “Infinity is zero with a twist.” Alan Hagedorn
    • Zero is both the lowest and the mightiest number. It is a value of none, but it makes the place-value system work. 1 is 1 until 12 zeros follow it. Then, it jumps all the way to a trillion…1,000,000,000,000 Wow! That is going to be a “looo,ooo,ooo,ooot” to pay back.
    Y2K (Year 2000) The world panicked about how computer programs might crash because they didn’t have 4 spaces for dealing with years. Computers registered the year 2000 as 00 and thought it is before 1999, which they recorded as 99.
    Zero major world crisis caused by Y2K
    Zero airplanes in the air on New Year’s night for most airlines
    Since there is no year 0 in the calendar, the new millennium didn’t even start on January 1, 2000…feeling duped we learn it starts on January 1, 2001 –but just like with odometers we love to see the 9’s turn into 0’s (we prefer zeros over new millenniums)
    Zero center – the Internet was conceived in the 60’s-90’s it was designed to be nuclear attack proof or to have no destroyable center, thus it is a center less network or a net…this decade it dominated the world
    Ground Zero — The catastrophe of the 9/11(01) – The anchor of this decade and this proposal
    Zero Tolerance Policies – get IU’s Bobby Knight fired and Swiss Army knife carrying Kindergarteners expelled
    Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation — blockbuster book published in 2003
    Marine “motto” Leave No Man Behind goes to education No Child Left Behind
    Zero percent – the US household savings rate in 2005 and 2006
    Zero Grams of Sugar rather than Sugar Free
    CocaColaZero (and Pepsi One – how perfect for the digital age)…Coke runs commercials about how CocaColaZero steals the recipe of Coke …Powerade Zero
    Pure Zer0 — Diet Rite’s name for its — 0calories 0carbs 0caffeine 0sodium colas
    Diet Pepsi packaging – 0 Cal Carb Sug
    Zero Caolories… …Zero Calorie Sweetener – Pure Via
    Zero Down … Zero Interest … Zero Payments
    Zero, Zero, Zero Sales by GM …and everyone else
    “Hurricane Katrina Zeros in on New Orleans” – as many stories read
    Zero costs [Free music, free Internet, free web pages, free computers] — the “Napsterification” of media (like the Wal-Mart Effect) — Napster 1999 (Metallica lawsuit 2000), NetZero 1998 (charges $ in 2001), Facemash/Facebook Oct. 28 2003, MySpace Aug 2003, Free laptop programs, YouTube (free on-line video space), Limewire … “Naption” is a good short form of “Napsterification” [“nap” (to steal as in kidnap) + “tion” the process of]
    Zero Grams of Fat… Zero Grams of Trans Fat – from McDonald’s fries to Girl Scout cookies
    0.???? second Google searches
    16-0 Patriots (2007) 0-16 Lions (2008)
    Oprah O Magazine, Obama O Logo
    Globalization 3.0 from The World is Flat (the 10 world flatteners converge in 2000)(Today, we say 3.0, rather than version 3)
    The Oval is the logo shape of the decade – look at car company logos…
    Zero Weapons of Mass Destruction found
    Michael Phelps wins his 7th of 8 Gold Medals by .01 seconds…effectively zero
    Chinese Olympics “Bird’s Nest” a big Zero
    Zero percent net gain for the NY Stock Market from 1998 to 2008
    Zero new large malls built in America in 2007, 2008, and 2009
    Zero or No Income Verification Loans
    Zero principal payment loans
    Zero Degrees – or a Credit Freeze
    Zero Dollar is mockingly passed out on Wall Street
    Zero International banks were willing to make interbank loans at the global interbank clearinghouse in New York City at the height of the meltdown — this was the official credit freeze 10/10/2008 – this bank-to-bank loan exchange is in-between Ground Zero and Wall Street…which are themselves less than 10 blocks apart –this event is the key part of
    …the “Economic Ground Zero”
    Salary Freezes – Home Depot leads the way
    Zero raises in many governments
    Pay freeze for top 100 White House Officials
    Digital TV (Digital information is all coded as Zero’s and One’s) – digital everything – binary bliss
    2009 in binary is 00110010001100000011000000111001
    Zero Percent Federal Funds rate – many things in the list like this, insiders would see as rare absurdities
    Already with no calories, Diet Mountain Dew changes its label from “Low Calorie” to Zero Calories
    NASA’s new fascination is studying Dark Matter — the nothing in outer space
    Zero Environmental Footprint
    Zero Carbon Emissions
    Zero Pollution … Zero Waste Factories
    Commissioned in 2005 and finished in 2008 the world’s largest particle accelerator CERN is located between France and Switzerland – it is going to be used to crash particles at the fastest speed ever (near the speed of light) in order to recreate the Big Bang like at the “Zero Hour at Ground Zero” or the creation of everything from the center
    “Zero cocaine, not zero coca” US and Bolivia official anti-cocaine policy in 2006
    Restaurant growth may be below 1% (or 0%) for the first time since it was measured in 1970
    For a time Citi (Citigroup/Citibank) – Citibank was the US’s largest bank in May 2008 and Citigroup is the world’s largest financial network — trades on Wall Street for less than a dollar $0.?? … …threatening its listing status
    41 Companies trimmed or eliminated their dividends by $40 Billion – Blue Chip Stocks with Zero dividends? … GE, JP Morgan, Dow Chemical
    Treasury Bills sold for “Zero” percent returns – during the economic collapse foreigners battle to buy safe US debt
    During this last year Federal Funds of about 1 Trillion have been created and distributed — this trillion dollars is merely digits in a computer – literally nothing
    $ 165 million given to AIG execs as bonuses, 3/17/09 members of Congress propose a 100% tax to get the money back – AIG chairman is only earning $1 a year
    In Pontiac, Michigan the school system gave every employee a pink slip – potentially all employees could lose their job…or Zero keep them
    Zero production – GM to shut down most factories for 9 weeks
    Zero percent inflation in US 1/08 to 1/09
    Sub-Zero percent growth — US Gross Domestic Product will show a decline this year of about 5%
    Sub-Zero percent growth of Gross World Product (the first time that total world output has declined on record) IMF predicts -1.3%
    “O CRDT CHKS” (Zero Credit Checks) Billboard by SafeAuto
    Zero Tolerance — for ocean pirates – a policy adopted by EU and France (and US)
    Zero Negotiations — a new way that we are saying we won’t negotiate with pirates/terrorist
    Zero Tolerance – the new policy of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation (and PTC) to stop electronic piracy of copyrighted materials
    Just for fun and a sign of what we can all uncover if we look at this decade through our very gr00vy New Year’s Double Zero glasses 2009:
    Zero people claiming fault for the world financial mess
    Zero middle ground between those who loved and those who hated George W. Bush
    Claims of “zero attacks on US soil” since 9/11
    Effectively, zero net jobs created by Bush Administration — losing them at about 20,000 jobs per day by the Inaugural
    There is no doubt in business, advertisement, government programming, popular culture, language development, digital advancement and historic circles that ZERO dominates or TIES the landscape of this decade and has left its footprint everywhere. As the decade closes out, Zero’s momentum grows and now is the time for us to adopt common use of the name and capture the collective experience of everyone. [edited]

  • Matt,

    I just sent you an email. Please take a moment to reflect on the Unies (00s) and the Decies (10s).

    Why the Unies? Because it simply stands the test of time. All the numbers between 0 and 9 are one digit. Uni means one, like unicycle and unicorn. It is also a prefix that means to come together to make one; like a university is a bunch of colleges.

    People can use for age too. I’m in my thirties and my little sister is in her unies.

    Finally, it works in the decade. I’ve been trying to name the decade throught the entire twenty-unies, 00s, 2000s.

    Don’t forget the next decade, the Decies! 2010s.

  • John Boston

    I just found myself reflexively referring to the years 2000-2005 as “the early aughts” in a text message. My gut confirms “the aughts” is the most elegant and correct handle for this quite over-ripe, soon to drop, decade.

  • Well, it looks like one company is going to put their money were my mouth is. Biscayne Lady Yacht Charters is going to celebrate a cruise dedicated to closing out the Unies and ringing in the Decies.


    Sorry but this New Year’s Cruise is going to be off the hook.


  • Brian Laskiewicz

    This is my first post, so I’ll address a few topics: 2000 decade, 2009 decade, and 20-XX vs 2,0XX speak.

    Here’s one for the 2000-2009 decade. I am surprised that this suggestion has not popped up much (if at all) before, the “Nullies,” which works well as far as the sound of the spoken word in the name sequence “seventies, eighties, nineties, and the nullies,” while using a less common but abstract and well-enough known variation of “zero.” At the same time “nullies” (or “nulls”) captures a level of mathematical sophistication (recalling the “null set”) but sounds relatively modern. Anything sounding like “naught(ies)” or “aught(ies)” may have been common before and have had precedent 100 years ago, but sounds too outdated in this era since people really do not speak that way, as I have never heard a year of this decade spoken as “twenty-(n)aught ___,” although I have on occasion heard “twenty o-____” in media or actually used by a State Judge while in Court and on the record.

    As far as the 2010-2019 decade, I do not have an answer yet. “Teens” doesn’t sound right on various grounds, like not accounting for 2010-2012 and being too commonly associated or confused with an age and stage of life focusing on our high school years. “Tens” sounds better but does not match with the common lexicon that includes some form of “-ies” as a suffix. Perhaps “tennies” could be suggested, but I have never heard this term with regard to the past or near future, and such would need to gain some greater usage, whereas “nulls” or “nullies” at least have other established linguistic uses.

    As far as speaking of the year names, I believe that by sometime next year, 2010 will commonly be spoken as “twenty ten.” Already I am hearing more and more references in media these days. The spoken name seems to vary by individual commentators these days, though there I have noticed (at least anecdotally) an increase in “twenty” at the expense of “two thousand” for years 2010 and beyond. I have long felt the switch would be at 2009-2010 (two thousand nine and then twenty ten, which would make for some interesting applications, such as the “two thousand nine-twenty ten” NBA or NHL seasons), and I was encouraged by a recent ESPN broadcast discussing Mike Holmgren’s coaching career, indicating he would sit out the “two thousand nine” season and later decide if he would coach in the “twenty ten” season, all spoken as such in the same sentence. Upcoming Olympics billing “Vancouver twenty ten” and “London twenty twelve” are also encouraging and highly visible signs. Given the nature of the English language to have years spoken as a combination of a pair of double-digit numbers (17-76, not 1,776 – unlike many other languages), it is even very conceivable that our current decade years will be retroactively be spoken as “twenty o-___” instead of “two thousand ___.” I suspect, however, that 2000 will still be known as “two thousand” (as there is too much allure in the zeroes).

    Hey GUErra take that! Today October 17, 2008, on Google’s firstpage search results for “decade name” Bogcritics.org – this blog, is listed number nine out of the top ten, and GUEss whose words are taglined. Mine not yours. Why? Must be pop culture’s answer again … and again and again.
    Search any search engine no matter how hard you try it Ryan it’s Randy they are highlighting and for real reasons. I did the math including counting all preceeding decades and their years succinctly and the fact that there was no year Zero AD or BC. It started with year one as does – and has to – every numbered decade if we consider this question in a historical light. Wikipedia as I see it struck out on the(ir) same course of thinking and they even virtually announced that one of our previous decades may have had nine years and so we could account for this decade beginning at 2000. Anyone would agree that’s pathetic if again I may offer some constructive criticism. Jimmy Wales under guise one day confronted me online and told me to take a hike as because I have my own website to say what I think. I personally could care less but can you actually see Bill O’Reilly or Katie coming on air to announce that “coming after the break, we will take a look at Visa’s projected earnings of the decade uh, um, well the um, uh, duh?” Huh?
    My taglines at Goolge’s search result today – and above here (are) – “No one seems to note the Yahoo Google answer to the “decade name” search. Try it – it comes up again and the same as it’s been resulting for 6 years now. …”. Those were my words. Huh, you don’t say!


  • Donnie Darko on March 13, 2006 says “2001-2010 is the first decade of the 21st Century” – but that, “2000 through 2009 is what people care about.” What? So what anyway are WE DECIDING is the decade? What do WE CARE the years are? Might that be where the dilema is. Of course any 10 year span is a decade but could we stick to the question more literally and not so culturally? I know what he’s saying. It’s not a double statement. Donnie worries about what people care about and won’t choose his own poison. Is not a personal attack but a constuctive criticism

  • ron

    7 seventies, 8 eighties, 9 ninties, 0 zeroties or aughties

  • I think that by reading Ryan Guerra’s blog on Naming the Decade will help you decide what the best name is — “The Unies!”

    Check it out

  • Kalliana2

    Boy, this was a fun read! me and my sister’s boy friend were discussing it, and he found this! I personally think there are many good ideas written up there, and i can’t pick just one! bye

  • bliffle

    “The O’s”, as in ‘oh’, is the only expression I’ve heard more than once.

  • “The decade we were bushwacked”

  • Cathy Ferreira

    I really like Ryan’s idea of naming years 0-9 “The Unies.” I enjoyed the videos that you have on “You Tube.” Would it be possibly to send me a shirt so I can help you support “The Unies?” Thanks…

  • Cathy Ferreira

    I really like Ryan’s idea of naming years 0-9 “The Unies.” I enjoyed the videos that he has on “You Tube.” Would it be possibly to send me a shirt so I can help you support “The Unies?” Thanks…

  • The Unies! The years between 0 & 9 are only one digit and uni means one. Unicycle, unicorn. It also is a pre-fix that means to make one. University is a bunch of colleges. Uniformity. Check out two videos on you tube: Good Morning Columbia, WLTX, New York City

  • Correct spell “Nomenclature.” Sorry!
    Now Dr Dreadful – who is we? Who has already decided on the nomenclature for the next decade? I assure you one thing cable media who has written off the “20 Zeroes” so far, is not near center of pop culture today as before even Hollywood, Madison Ave or my suggestion the box you’re in front of here now, the world wide web and which is what Frank Abate, Editor In Chief of the Oxford English Dictionary proposed.
    That we – “Await the riddle answer out of pop culture”. I guess it depends on both what you watch and who you listen to.
    My advisors at collegiate level prefer the internet to rule supreme which is where this forum began under investigation of the USAToday’s Maria Puentes then without yet my individual knowledge and or involvement if you would click on the about button at my homepage revealing the dates I began to involve my opinions. I stumbled on the story three months after these jounals and lexicons abandoned the search. There is a great record of matter involving even the number one book publisher in England who also prefer to call it the twenty zeros. She came two weeks after I did online with the title name proposal.
    Somebody do some research please. Thanks, Randy aka ZDecade

  • Yeah like that song “In The Year Twenty-Five Twenty-Five…
    If you’re suspicious Doc why not become suspect that even when we hit year ’20 10 journalists mainstream will no longer address the term “two-thousand (and?) ten”. They presently do not say “20 anything” because their scripts disallow any reference as such. Probably becuase of all the hoopla there was at the beginning of this decade with 150,000 people polled and only winners coming up as “the zilches or aughts” when USAToday and the two dictionary chief-editors abandoned the project suggesting there it was a huge task. Really any kindergartner can count to 10 and then to 20. Pitiful really in my view.
    My network fullfilled all the requirements so far the media has burdened the community at large with and from my research it stands yet do one or two online editors being with Aol or Google and definitively also Jimmy Wales of Wikipedia who, roadblock my findings of too the count of 20 character zeroes in the decade 2001 -2010. I don’t ask for anything let alone the big “thanks.” Simply now let’s seriously for professionals in the field of linguistics get on with this alpha-numericaly, lexicographically and acronomically correct “twenty zero(e)s” decade name at least once for the record.” I may like it myself the twenty-circles” but what does it matter what I want? Hey?

    Nomanclature? What?

  • The Giant Sea Weiner

    because rap sucks it should be the what “happened to rock and roll” years or something like that

  • dictionary editors suggested in sync that the answer to the riddle would come out of pop culture

    Which is exactly what’s happened.

    We call this year ‘Two Thousand [and] Eight’, we have already decided on nomenclature for the next decade – for example, it will be ‘The Two Thousand Twelve Olympics’, not ‘The Twenty-Twelve Olympics’.

    I suspect, though, that when we hit 2020 we will revert to our old conventions and that the year 2025, for example, will be referred to as ‘Twenty-Twenty-Five’.

  • Answering Derrick F in the above line I should comment that it is a regular error somewhat when sometimes we are addressing the century by name as he did referring to it as the “twenty hundreds” but shouldn’t instead to this decade “twenty zeros” being zeros are in the single didget column and hundreds (even) a three didget placement. A two-word term alots each word for a turn to express first, our hundred of years which is what the term “twenty” is and does – and the second and last term to the tens or decade not century of years. Here even is big clue if you consider “a decimal point over” from that attempt to place our second word of the two-word title as being “tens”and also “hundreds.” Derrick now re-read your comment about the twenty hundreds. It accurately does though describe our century ahead so good entry part way! The nineteen hundreds most people have refered to as this last century but now finally too as you I am blown away also how people as are broadcasters who cannot seem to say Twenty O-Seven while describing our years. we still call the present year “Two-Thousand-Seven” and not “Twenty-O-Seven.” Great job in commenting “In 1907 they didn’t call it the year, One-Thousand-Nine-Hundred-and Seven

    I have suggested we call this first decade the Twenty O’s or the “twenty Z’s” for the “zeros.”
    This original story from USAToday landed in my lap at the decade start when there as decided by search engines as proper for our word-search “decade name” and dictionary editors suggested in sync that the answer to the riddle would come out of pop culture which is as best here what the internet is and search engines being 80% of the urls people visit.
    I think serious viewers will find my reading an account to be reckoned with. Here though is an opportunity to steer the matter along in stride as with a business touch being importantly institutional agenda and or matters have a greater stake in being lexicographically correct than we do who wish merely to be entertained.

  • I vote for: I don’t give a crap.

    I do, however, feel that enough time has elapsed for me to decently think that ‘Terrorist Jenga’ is hysterically funny.

    Well done.

    Sorry, everyone. Carry on.

  • The best names are

    the Zeros
    the Twenty hundreds

    From 2020 onwards it’ll be the traditional 20s,30s,40s,etc but for the decade of 2010-2019 i’ve no idea. I think the 10s sounds stupid.

  • George

    We’ve always referred to the time 1900-1909 as the “Aughts” in our family — “Aught two”, “Aught nine” — and I see no reason not to continue this fine tradition. “Grandpa graduated in ‘Aught three'” (1903) and “I went to work for Tom in ‘Aught five'” (2005). Of course, it sounds a bit old-fashioned, but for lack of a better term, I think it’s still perfectly serviceable. Um, and *vacuum tubes* are still perfectly serviceable (my 1953 RCA Victor AM/FM kitchen radio still works). 12BE6, anyone?

  • Derrick F

    Based on my grandfathers letters to his bride in 1907, he always referred to that decade in his day as the “Nineteen-Hundreds.”

    What perplexes me is why we still call the present year “Two-Thousand-Seven” and not “Twenty-O-Seven.” In 1907 they didn’t call it the year, “One-Thousand-Nine-Hundred-and Seven” ..Right?

    All that said, why is it we not calling the present decade “THE TWENTY HUNDREDS”?

  • Yeah Tom one of my debaters has the same argument as you concerning the singles and single years of this new century and he voted for a name “the unies.” Go to the link here I’m posting and read Zebs account in the TOC at leftpage.

  • Tom Mazza

    The singles – you talked about an abbreviation for the single digits – but you didn’t mention the singles – this makes sense to me and also has a cool connotation – young people…yong cool cats not yet having tied the knot…hippies…hey, yeah, I like the Zippies suggestion too…I’ll vote for that And yes, I am a meteorologist… and the next decade the teens even though 2010-2012 aren’t technically teens – we meteorologits have to say 10 to 15 for those temps.

    And I think decades have the same names every century – the 1890s and 1990s are the 90s – just put 18 or 19 or 20 in front when clarity is needed.

  • Musicians are into bondage?

  • The 2K’s have yet to produce an invention as important as duct tape (the musician’s best friend) or velcro. Time to get on the stick, people!

  • The Bushit decade?

  • as a buzzphrase, neither of those exactly roll off the tongue, Jet… something a bit snappier, please?

  • “The decade of the loaded church bus voters”

  • In “God” we trust-or Bush’s version of him anyway.

  • My bad, Chris. Thanks!

  • RAY: Perhaps you could use some of that free time to put http:// in front of your url in the comments box then the URL link back to your blog will work properly. Thanks.

  • I’ve made it my personal mission to have this decade officially dubbed “the 2K’s” because of the sorta sci-fi utilitarian ring it has, the graphic possibilities and mostly because I have too much time on my hands.

  • So you think this is one of the better decades? With a bit of luck it will be the decade that time forgets. Personally I think it sucks almost as bad as the 90s did!

  • “I Love the…”, what? The zeros? The aughts? I believe its time we labeled this decade “The Zippies”. There’s something lacking with “The Zips” and “Zippies” has a certain symmetry to the other decades. So, what do you think? Are you ready to get behind “the zippies” before someone comes up with a truly butt-ugly description of this decade? If we don’t bond together on this, you could be looking at being forced to have lived in “The O’s”. Our children and grandchildren will ask us, “Was it as much fun to have lived in the Zippies as it sounds?” Probably not, but we have such a zip, zip, zippy name, we’ll say (in our best Gabby Hayes voice), “Darn tootin’, my little butterwings. We zipped like there was no tomorrow!”

  • Rob des Ranleau

    the official name for the decade after the nineties?
    how about a simple acronym for the “Turn Of the Century”

    how about the T.O.C.?

    in 2085, we can look forward to some old geezer saying: “It was hard to be a kid growing up in the T.O.C.”

    conversely we could call it “the first decade” and thus avoid confusing the upcoming decade with “the roaring twenties”

    (it would be called “the second decade”)

  • My two cents:

    The third millenium and 21st Century technically started in 2001. In a pop cultural sense, they started in 2000, however I think in a more abstract sense you could say the 1990s are the beginning of the 21st Century, based on what we’re in now. By 1993 it was pretty obvious that the Cold War was over and we were moving into a totally new, quasi-futuristic world.

    This decade is 2000-2009, not 2001-2010. 2001-2010 is the first decade of the 21st Century. 2000-2009 is the decade people care about.

    Which I think should be called the Zeroes, if you read my blog.

  • Post-Follow-Up: THERE WAS NO YEAR ZERO AD/BC –

    In response to Tom M. above –

    There are exactly 20 zeroes in this first decade if you dare to count them. Years 2001 AD through 2010 ADadd up as “2” (2001), 4 (2002), 6 (2003), 8 (2004), 10 (2005), 12 (2006), 14 (2007), 16 (2008), 18 (2009), and 20 (2010) but I named it because the 20 represents the “hundred of years” and the Zeroes (the second word-term) for the decade of years. The “20” count came after the fact or theorem.

  • No one seems to note the Yahoo Google answer to the “decade name” search. Try it – it comes up again and the same as it’s been resulting for 6 years now. 20 ZerOs or Twenty O’s however you prefer, considering the big fat “O” sits ending the word zerO!

    Visit http://www.TwentyZeros.com and get up to speed as originally editors at Webster and OE suggested the answer would resolve in popular culture which is utmost what “internet” search engines are, unless you would protest possibly that Hollywood rates better of pop culture. I’m headed there next and I hope last. Google up “hollywood appearance.”
    Yours Truly,
    Randy Frushour

  • troll

    let’s call it ‘the decade of peace’ – maybe if we repeat the big lie often enough it will become the real

    hey – it works for the bad guys


  • If the University of Akron ever wins a national championship in something, you certainly have a strong case.

  • Tom Munson

    Okay, I’m late to this game (what else is new) but I like the thread and am glad you brought it up. I’ve been wondering for a long time why no name had emerged. But let’s face it: nobody says aught and naught. Ever. Except the Brits and they sure as heck don’t count. What we need is another, more contemporary, more American term for zero. In that light, the choice is obvious: the Zips. “Remember that time back in zip-four?” It’s easy to say, it’s descriptive, and it isn’t “aught” for God’s sake! 2000 of course can only be called “two-thousand,” not “zip” or “zip-zip”.

  • Nick

    We’ve been calling it “the naughties” for about 6 yeas now….

  • Miles: What’s wrong with the Noughties? It’s accurate and funny too. The ohties? Just sounds retarded mate, Do you remember the OTs? Naah, but I remember the Noughties, what fun we had!

  • Miles

    The Brits seem to have decided on “The Noughties,” (do a google news search on the term and you’ll see what I mean) but I don’t think that’s going to fly in North America.

    I think the most natural name for this decade is “The Ohs,” since we refer to its years as “oh-two, oh-three, oh-four,” etc.

    My personal pick? “The Ohties.” Because you need something that fits the “-ties” decade naming scheme. I know it sounds a little awkward at first, but after a few tries, it kind of feels right. Go ahead…try it.

  • Dave Nalle

    I did say ‘Age’ not decade, so I guess I’m going a bit beyond the concept of the original post.


  • Well Dave, how’s that any different from the 90s or the 80s? Or from how the 10s are likely to be, for that matter?

    Incidentally, jumping back a few comments, this decade began in 2000 and and will end in 2009. Likewise with the millennium (except for the part about ending in ’09).

    Yes, there is no year zero in our calendar. Yes, this causes people who wish humans acted like computers, and others who just enjoy thinking they know more than everyone else, to make silly claims like “the millennium didn’t really start until 2001” or “the decade started in 2001 and will end when 2010 ends” but that doesn’t make such claims any less silly. Humans just don’t think that way. Normal, average people will always say the millennium, the century, and the decade started in 2000.

  • Dave Nalle

    I vote for the Age of Divisiveness.


  • Oh oh…

  • I vote for the Uh-Ohs.

  • I would have no problem with upgrading my decade monikeer from The Aughts to the Aughties or even The Noughties, even if the slant rhyme impaired couldn’t tell the difference between that and the Eighties.

  • john

    Apparently in Elle magazine in England there are calling it the “Noughties” With O is the english spelling.

  • just to defend the 1900s–because they’re not around to fight for themselves–a couple of profound events took place in science and art: Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, and the emergence of Cubism, signaling a significant shift from representational art. Oh sure, the 1900s didn’t have the glitz and glamour of the 1910s, but it’s those strong silent decades ya gotta watch out for. So, in tribute, I suggest we call the 2000s the 1900s.

  • VS, yeesh. I’ve never seen the following question on an essay teset:

    1. The years 1800-1809 was an important time in American history. Describe society during this time and compare it to its neighboring decades. Use the space provided

    Clearly you’ve never been on the business end of Masters’ exams in US history. That was pretty much the question one of the sadists I picked for my jury gave me. Granted, I chose the field and the sadist, but he coulda been nicer, asking *merely* about, say, the social and cultural foundations of the Second Great Awakening, or about the rise of machine politics in the pre-Jacksonian political climate, but nooo… “explain a decade” was the question, more or less. I wrote for an hour and a half on that question, and afterwards went to get drunk.

  • This thread is proof we need to decide on something now. And I motion everyone just listen to me.

  • Luke

    I’ve always called it the zero’s, makes sense to me, zero ten twenty thirty, zeros tens twenties thirties, why is this not obvious to everyone else?

    and also “Actually, it’s five. The decade began in 2001 and will end when 2010 ends. Funny article, but there’s no reason it can’t be accurate.” <--this is fuckin stupid, 2001 was the start of the new millenium, but decades and centuries have always been called when there's a zero at the end, after all, the eighties were called the eighties because they began with 8, the nineties were the nineties because they began with 9, the year 2000 was not part of the nineties.

  • I like to refer to it as “the new millenium,” with just a bit of arch irony in my voice. You know, like the Conan O’Brien segment on the DVD you linked.

  • i’ve heard talk of the Noughties. like Naughty, i suposse. it is troubling. they didn’t care about it in 1900-1909 because they didn’t have to worry about nostalgia shows on telly back then. in ten years time, what are they gonna say? who the hell knows?

  • RogerMDillon

    You must be joking. The show sucked by that point and was a pathetic copy of itself. They stayed on two or three years too long. It jumped the shark right after Elaine became George.

  • * The decade began in 2001 and will end when 2010 ends.

    You’re just jealous because you didn’t get an invitation to Newmanium.

  • I’ve heard many people call it the “Ohs.”

    In a meeting I heard a guy say, “Back in twenty oh three.”

    I also overheard two teenage girls in Starbucks.

    One said, “Remember the fear about the millenium?”

    “Yeah,” said the other, “back in twenty oh-oh.”

    Ric Ocasek indeed!

  • I vote for the Double Naughts. It rolls off the tongue rather nicely, and after all, aren’t we trying to make this a relatively easy thing to remember? Future historians will just avoid talking about this decade altogether, just as we do the, …uh, period between 1900-1910.

  • RogerMDillon

    “That’s six years of this decade.”

    Actually, it’s five. The decade began in 2001 and will end when 2010 ends. Funny article, but there’s no reason it can’t be accurate.

    How about we call them “the Clarkes”?

  • Bennett


    “Yeah, back in the otters…”

    I dunno, I get on the “the 1920s” but would have a hard time using anything similar for 1900-1909 and 1910-1919.

    Strange gap, that.

  • Thaed fo eht citarcomed ytrap.

  • The Oughters?

  • Hey hey, I’m just trying to generalize here. There is a given system to name the decades right? If the century for that decade isn’t up yet, it’s called by the first 2 digits, such as, the 1990’s being called the nineties, but if it is, then it’s called by the entire thing, such as, the 1890’s being called the eighteen-nineties. See. Generalization simplifies things.

    But, since there isn’t really a “-ties” for 0-9, and seeing how 10-19 is called the tens, can’t we in essence, call 0-9, the Ones? There, that’s my new proposal, how about that?

  • VS, yeesh. I’ve never seen the following question on an essay teset:

    1. The years 1800-1809 was an important time in American history. Describe society during this time and compare it to its neighboring decades. Use the space provided


    Perhaps in 100 years or so we can say the 2000s to differentiate between the 2000s and the 2100s. Till then, enjoy The Aughts.

  • i don’t know what to call the decade but that article sure was funny!

  • Okay, fine. What do we call the period between 1800-1809 then? I believe call it the 1800’s. And if nothing happened between 1800-1809 and it remains unnamed, how about 1700-1709 then? Or 1600-1609? Or 1500-1509? Or 1400-1409? Or 1300-1309? Or 1200-1209? Or 1100-1109? Or 1000-1009? Or 900-909? Or 800-809? Or 700-709? Or 600-609? Or 500-509? Or 400-409? Or 300-309? Or 200-209? Or 100-109? Or 0-9? Actually, to this date, I still don’t know what we call the years between 0-9. I guess I haven’t thought that far back.

  • VS:

    But nothing happened between 1900-09. Nothing. It’s the boring part of The Onion’s Our Dumb Century. So it’s not called anything.

  • Actually, upon further thinking, that doesn’t work. What do we currently call the 1900-1909 decade? The 1900’s. So in essence, your dislike of The 2000’s is the only logical description going forward for the years of 2000-2009.

  • How about the Pre-Tens (or pre-teens)? I’m thinking of this purely as number descriptions.

    The Nineties
    The Seventies
    The Fifties
    The Thirties
    The Tens
    The Pre-Tens

  • The “Goose-Egg” years–that’s what I call this period.

    Just wondering if anybody wanted to change the name of “Generation Y” to something more tolerable, maybe the “TRL generation,” although I hate the show?

  • The Oh-Ohs?

    Who are you all of a sudden, Ric Ocasek?

  • I call it Steve.

    Nice work, Matt!

  • I call it the “oh-oh”s too. And that’s what I think everytime I see “the 00’s” written out. (Ha! Look at that! I’m thinking it again right now.)

    However, somebody recently pointed me towards a rerun of the Beverly Hillbillies, wherein Jethro says that he wants to be a “Double Naught Spy” (i.e., “007.”)

    I move we call this decade “the double naughts.”

  • Eric Olsen

    nice Matt! I call it the “oh-oh’s.”

    Will we call the period from 2010-2014 the tweens?

  • JR

    The Aughts

    As in, they ought to have gone a lot better but for that stupid election.

    You know, the problem with 9-11 is that for the rest of the world that’s November 9th. But we don’t care, do we?