gate·​keep·​er | \ ˈgāt-ˌkē-pər How to pronounce gatekeeper (audio) \

Definition of gatekeeper

1 : one that tends or guards a gate
2 : a person who controls access

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Other Words from gatekeeper

gatekeeping \ ˈgāt-​ˌkē-​piŋ How to pronounce gatekeeping (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for gatekeeper


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Examples of gatekeeper in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Lil Nas himself became the gatekeeper, and then opened the door as wide as possible for everyone else. Andrew R. Chow, Time, "The 10 Best Songs of 2019," 28 Nov. 2019 And colleges, of course, reap the outsized benefits of acting as the gatekeepers to employment. Frederick M. Hess, National Review, "Break Up the B.A. Cartel," 7 Nov. 2019 At the core of this ideology—by turns naïve, blithely rapacious, and hubristic—was the technologists’ determination to avoid being perceived as gatekeepers. Andrew Marantz, The New Yorker, "Facebook and the “Free Speech” Excuse," 31 Oct. 2019 Venture capitalists, the gatekeepers to success in Silicon Valley, often talk about investing in people not ideas. Alison Griswold, Quartz, "The fall of Adam Neumann is the logical endpoint of Silicon Valley’s unicorn bubble," 24 Sep. 2019 Although largely forgotten, taste testers served as the gatekeepers in a larger federal project that, since the founding of the USDA in 1862, has attempted to influence what food winds up in American kitchens. Michael Waters, Smithsonian, "The Government Taste Testers Who Reshaped America’s Diet," 9 Aug. 2019 The sellers’ listing broker is a gatekeeper, spokesperson and adviser. Pat Kapowich, The Mercury News, "Sponsored: Missing counteroffer creates an appraisal problem; what do buyers do next?," 8 Aug. 2019 The platforms have never been comfortable with their role as gatekeepers. The Economist, "The unacknowledged legislators of the online world," 14 June 2019 The good news and the bad news, there are fewer gatekeepers. Hal Boedeker,, "Paula Poundstone prizes ‘Wait Wait,’ podcasts, Mr. Haney," 19 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gatekeeper.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of gatekeeper

1572, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for gatekeeper

Time Traveler

The first known use of gatekeeper was in 1572

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Statistics for gatekeeper

Last Updated

15 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Gatekeeper.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 19 January 2020.

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More Definitions for gatekeeper


How to pronounce gatekeeper (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of gatekeeper

: a person who guards a gate


gate·​keep·​er | \ ˈgāt-ˌkē-pər How to pronounce gatekeeper (audio) \

Kids Definition of gatekeeper

: a person who guards a gate


gate·​keep·​er | \ -ˌkē-pər How to pronounce gatekeeper (audio) \

Medical Definition of gatekeeper

: a health-care professional (as a primary care physician) who regulates access especially to hospitals and specialists managed care plans rely on a designated physician gatekeeper to orchestrate and control the health care of its enrollees— E. A. Halm et al

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Comments on gatekeeper

What made you want to look up gatekeeper? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to insert between existing elements

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