Top 31 Slang For Boycott – Meaning & Usage

When it comes to expressing dissent or taking a stand, language plays a powerful role. Boycotts have been a form of protest for decades, and understanding the slang associated with this act can add depth to your activism toolkit. Join us as we break down the top slang terms for boycott that you need to know to navigate the world of social movements and consumer activism with confidence. Get ready to level up your vocabulary and stay informed on the latest trends in protest culture!

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1. Blacklist

To exclude or boycott someone or something, often for negative reasons. When someone is blacklisted, they are intentionally left out or ignored.

  • For example, “After the scandal, the actor was blacklisted from Hollywood.”
  • In a discussion about unfair business practices, someone might say, “We should boycott companies that use child labor and blacklist them.”
  • A person might warn others by saying, “Be careful, that company has a history of bad practices and should be blacklisted.”

2. Cold-shoulder

To intentionally ignore or disregard someone, often as a form of punishment or protest. Giving someone the cold shoulder means refusing to acknowledge their presence or interact with them.

  • For instance, “After the argument, she gave him the cold shoulder for days.”
  • In a situation where someone is being rude, a person might say, “Just ignore them and give them the cold shoulder.”
  • A friend might advise, “If someone is not treating you well, it’s okay to give them the cold shoulder.”

3. Give the cold shoulder

To intentionally ignore or snub someone, often as a way of expressing disapproval or displeasure. Giving someone the cold shoulder means refusing to engage with them or acknowledge their presence.

  • For example, “She was upset with her friend and decided to give her the cold shoulder.”
  • In a situation where someone is being rude, a person might say, “Just give them the cold shoulder and don’t let it bother you.”
  • A person might advise, “If someone is treating you poorly, it’s best to give them the cold shoulder and distance yourself.”

4. Ice out

To exclude or ostracize someone, often as a form of punishment or protest. When someone is iced out, they are intentionally left out or isolated.

  • For instance, “After the disagreement, the group decided to ice him out and not invite him to any events.”
  • In a discussion about toxic relationships, someone might say, “If someone is not treating you well, it’s important to ice them out and prioritize your well-being.”
  • A friend might advise, “You deserve better, so don’t hesitate to ice out anyone who brings negativity into your life.”

5. Shun

To intentionally reject or avoid someone, often as a way of expressing disapproval or disagreement. Shunning someone means refusing to associate or interact with them.

  • For example, “After the betrayal, she decided to shun her former friend.”
  • In a conversation about standing up against injustice, someone might say, “We should shun companies that support unethical practices.”
  • A person might advise, “If someone is consistently disrespectful, it’s important to shun them and surround yourself with positive influences.”

6. Avoid like the plague

This phrase is used to emphasize the strong desire to avoid or stay away from something or someone, similar to how people would avoid the plague in fear of getting infected.

  • For example, “I’m going to avoid that party like the plague. I heard it’s going to be boring.”
  • Someone might say, “I avoid going to that restaurant like the plague because their service is terrible.”
  • In a discussion about a disliked celebrity, a person might comment, “I avoid watching any movies with that actor like the plague.”

7. Ban

To ban something means to officially or formally prohibit or forbid it, often due to moral, legal, or safety reasons.

  • For instance, “The government banned the sale of cigarettes to minors.”
  • A person might say, “I’m going to ban myself from eating fast food for a month to improve my health.”
  • In a discussion about a controversial book, someone might argue, “The school board wants to ban this book from the curriculum due to its explicit content.”

8. Censure

Censure refers to the act of expressing strong disapproval or criticism towards someone or something, often in an official or formal manner.

  • For example, “The committee censured the politician for his unethical behavior.”
  • A person might say, “I censure the company for their poor customer service.”
  • In a debate about a controversial decision, someone might argue, “The public needs to censure the government for their lack of transparency.”

9. Exclude

To exclude means to intentionally leave out or omit someone or something from a group, activity, or situation.

  • For instance, “The party excluded people who didn’t RSVP.”
  • A person might say, “I feel excluded from the team because they never invite me to their social events.”
  • In a discussion about a club’s membership criteria, someone might argue, “The club shouldn’t exclude people based on their social status.”

10. Refuse

To refuse means to decline or reject something, often due to personal reasons, disagreement, or dissatisfaction.

  • For example, “He refused to accept the job offer because he didn’t agree with the company’s values.”
  • A person might say, “I refuse to eat at that restaurant again after getting food poisoning.”
  • In a negotiation, someone might state, “I refuse to settle for anything less than what I deserve.”

11. Reject

To reject something means to refuse to accept or consider it. It can be used to describe refusing to support or participate in something as a form of boycott.

  • For example, “I reject the company’s unethical practices and will no longer purchase their products.”
  • A person might say, “I reject the idea of attending that event because of their discriminatory policies.”
  • In a discussion about social justice, someone might state, “We need to reject systems of oppression and work towards equality.”

12. Snub

To snub someone or something means to deliberately ignore or dismiss them as a form of protest or boycott. It can be used to describe intentionally refusing to acknowledge or engage with a person or organization.

  • For instance, “She snubbed the award ceremony to show her dissatisfaction with the organization.”
  • A person might say, “I will snub any company that supports animal cruelty.”
  • In a conversation about political activism, someone might mention, “We need to snub politicians who ignore the needs of marginalized communities.”

13. Turn one’s back on

To turn one’s back on something means to abandon or reject it. It can be used to describe refusing to support or be associated with someone or something as a form of boycott.

  • For example, “I turned my back on that company after learning about their exploitative labor practices.”
  • A person might say, “We should turn our backs on any political party that fails to address climate change.”
  • In a discussion about consumer choices, someone might state, “I turned my back on fast fashion and now only support sustainable clothing brands.”

14. Abstain

To abstain means to refrain from doing or participating in something, often as a form of protest or boycott. It can be used to describe choosing not to engage or support a particular activity or cause.

  • For instance, “I abstained from voting in the election to show my dissatisfaction with the candidates.”
  • A person might say, “I will abstain from purchasing products that contribute to deforestation.”
  • In a conversation about political activism, someone might mention, “We should abstain from supporting companies that exploit their workers.”

15. Blackball

To blackball someone means to exclude or ostracize them, often as a form of boycott or protest. It can be used to describe intentionally preventing someone from participating or being accepted in a particular group or organization.

  • For example, “They blackballed him from the industry after he spoke out against corruption.”
  • A person might say, “We should blackball any company that engages in discriminatory practices.”
  • In a discussion about social justice, someone might state, “We need to blackball individuals who perpetuate hate and bigotry.”

16. Ostracize

To exclude or banish someone from a group or community. “Ostracize” is often used to describe the act of boycotting or avoiding someone as a form of protest or punishment.

  • For example, if a celebrity is involved in a scandal, people might say, “They should be ostracized from the industry.”
  • In a social setting, someone might say, “I’m going to ostracize him for what he did.”
  • A group might decide to ostracize a member who goes against their values or beliefs.
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17. Protest

To publicly express objection or dissent against something. “Protest” can take many forms, including marches, rallies, and sit-ins, and is often used as a way to boycott or show opposition to a particular cause or action.

  • For instance, people might protest against unfair labor practices by boycotting a company.
  • In response to a controversial decision, a group might organize a protest to demand change.
  • Activists might use protests to raise awareness about social or political issues.

18. Resist

To actively refuse or take a stand against something. “Resist” can be used to describe the act of boycotting or rejecting a particular product, service, or action.

  • For example, people might resist buying products from companies that engage in unethical practices.
  • A group might resist a government policy by organizing a boycott.
  • Individuals might resist societal norms by boycotting certain behaviors or practices.

19. Strike

To refuse to work as a form of protest or to demand better working conditions. “Strike” is often used in the context of labor disputes, where workers collectively boycott their work to put pressure on their employers.

  • For instance, workers might go on strike to demand higher wages or better benefits.
  • In response to unfair treatment, a union might call for a strike to show solidarity and force negotiations.
  • Employees might strike to protest unsafe working conditions.

20. Walk out

To exit a place or situation as a form of protest or to show disagreement. “Walk out” is often used to describe the act of boycotting or leaving a meeting, event, or organization as a means of expressing dissatisfaction or disapproval.

  • For example, students might walk out of class to protest a school policy.
  • Attendees might walk out of a conference to demonstrate their disagreement with a speaker.
  • Employees might walk out of a company meeting to show their opposition to a decision.
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21. Dissent

To dissent means to express a different opinion or to protest against something. It is a form of disagreement or opposition.

  • For example, “Many students dissented against the university’s decision to increase tuition fees.”
  • In a political context, a person might say, “I dissent from the government’s policies on climate change.”
  • During a meeting, someone might voice their dissent by saying, “I respectfully dissent from this proposal.”

22. Opt out

To opt out means to choose not to participate or be involved in something. It is a way of refusing or boycotting a particular activity or situation.

  • For instance, “I decided to opt out of the team-building exercise because I don’t enjoy physical activities.”
  • A person might say, “I’m opting out of social media to focus on my mental health.”
  • When asked to join a club, someone might respond, “I’ll have to opt out as I don’t have the time.”

23. Strike out

To strike out means to exclude or remove something or someone from a particular situation or group. It is a way of boycotting or rejecting someone or something.

  • For example, “The company decided to strike out the controversial product from their lineup.”
  • In a sports context, a player might say, “I was struck out of the team due to my poor performance.”
  • When discussing a political candidate, someone might say, “We need to strike out the corrupt politicians from our government.”

24. Turn away

To turn away means to refuse entry or service to someone. It is a way of boycotting or rejecting someone or something by not allowing them to be part of a particular situation.

  • For instance, “The bouncer turned away the underage individuals from entering the club.”
  • In a business context, a customer might say, “I was turned away from the restaurant because I didn’t have a reservation.”
  • When discussing immigration policies, someone might argue, “We shouldn’t turn away refugees in need of help.”

25. Refrain

To refrain means to abstain from or avoid doing something. It is a way of boycotting or rejecting a particular action or behavior.

  • For example, “I decided to refrain from eating meat for ethical reasons.”
  • A person might say, “I refrain from participating in gossip because it can be harmful.”
  • When discussing a controversial topic, someone might ask, “Can we please refrain from personal attacks and focus on the facts?”

26. Abandon

To leave or desert something or someone, often in a sudden or unexpected manner. “Abandon” can also refer to intentionally giving up or renouncing support or involvement in a cause, organization, or activity.

  • For instance, a dissatisfied customer might say, “I’m going to abandon this brand and switch to a competitor.”
  • In a political context, a supporter might announce, “I can no longer support this candidate and will abandon their campaign.”
  • A person discussing a personal decision might declare, “I’ve decided to abandon my plans and pursue a different path.”

27. Forswear

To formally reject or give up a belief, principle, or commitment. “Forswear” is often used to indicate a deliberate decision to no longer support or participate in something.

  • For example, a person who used to be a loyal fan of a sports team might declare, “I will forswear my allegiance and no longer support this team.”
  • In a religious context, a person might say, “I have chosen to forswear my previous faith and convert to a different religion.”
  • A person discussing a personal transformation might announce, “I am ready to forswear my old habits and embrace a healthier lifestyle.”

28. Turn down

To refuse or decline an offer, invitation, or request. “Turn down” can also mean to intentionally avoid or ignore something.

  • For instance, a job applicant might receive an offer and decide to turn it down, saying, “I appreciate the opportunity, but I have decided to pursue a different opportunity.”
  • In a social context, a person might decline an invitation by saying, “I’m sorry, but I have to turn down the invitation as I already have plans.”
  • A person discussing a tempting but unethical opportunity might declare, “I had to turn down the offer because it went against my values.”

29. Pass up

To choose not to take advantage of an opportunity, often due to hesitation, indecision, or lack of interest. “Pass up” implies letting go of a chance or not seizing a favorable situation.

  • For example, a person might say, “I regret passing up the opportunity to travel when I was younger.”
  • In a shopping context, a person might pass up a sale and later regret not buying the discounted item.
  • A person discussing a missed opportunity might reflect, “I didn’t realize the significance at the time and chose to pass it up.”

30. Give up

To stop trying or pursuing something, often due to frustration, exhaustion, or lack of progress. “Give up” can also mean to surrender, relinquish, or abandon a belief or cause.

  • For instance, a person struggling with a difficult task might say, “I give up. I can’t figure it out.”
  • In a relationship context, a person might decide to give up on a toxic partnership and seek happiness elsewhere.
  • A person discussing a long-standing goal might admit, “After years of trying, I finally decided to give up and focus on other priorities.”

31. Deprive

To deprive means to deny someone or something of a particular privilege, right, or benefit. In the context of boycott, it refers to intentionally withholding support or participation as a form of protest or punishment.

  • For example, “We will boycott that company and deprive them of our business.”
  • A group might decide to deprive a certain product or brand, saying, “Let’s boycott that company and show them our disapproval.”
  • In a discussion about social justice, someone might suggest, “We should deprive those who perpetuate inequality of our support.”