I invented ‘virtue signalling’. Now it’s taking over the world

“To my astonishment and delight, the phrase ‘virtue signalling’ has become part of the English language. I coined the phrase in an article here in The Spectator (18 April) in which I described the way in which many people say or write things to indicate that they are virtuous. Sometimes it is quite subtle. By saying that they hate the Daily Mail or Ukip, they are really telling you that they are admirably non-racist, left-wing or open-minded…”

  • Dana Garcia

    The phrase certainly has become popular over at Vdare.com. Google search counts 200 uses. Derb thinks Ann Coulter invented it, although she has been known to appropriate creatively.


  • Drunk_by_Noon

    Why did it take so damn long to name the toxic social preening that has excused so much wrong in the world?

    We need to beat the SJWs with this term like it’s a giant black rubber dildo.

    • Brett_McS

      But they’d enjoy that, DbN.

      • Drunk_by_Noon

        Then I will concede them that ‘pleasure’ as I would enjoy beating them with one.

  • WalterBannon

    By saying that they hate the Daily Mail or Ukip, they are really telling you that they are… odious, treasonous, left wing, scumbags who’s names you should note for when the civil war comes, so that they can be summarily executed.

  • Foremost virtue signal in leftist circles is being anti-Israel, pro-“Palestine”. The easiest way to flag this is to wear a keffiyeh – gives you a debonair revolutionary look.

    • Justin St.Denis

      Aren’t “tea-shirts” worn exclusively by public-washroom-obsessed gays? 😉

  • The thing to always keep in mind regarding leftists is just how superficial and conventional they are. They think of themselves as deep and revolutionary, but they are just thoughtless followers of fashionable trends. Sex plays a big part in this role-playing – the desire to seduce some kindred spirit. They must absolutely FIT IN to the current “religion” (in this case the atheist religion of Marxism) in order to find a place in their peer group.

  • Justin St.Denis

    This person is surely no language specialist! He “invented virtue-signalling”? I believe he means that he “coined the phrase”.

    The person who coined the phrase “going postal” a few decades back did not do so by shooting up a postal station, killing people, then announcing that he “went postal” over something.

    There was a time not so long ago when most people had a passing familiarity with their own first language – even journalists! Pardon me while I enjoy a moment of nostalgia for a more literate period in history.