lip service


Definition of lip service

: an avowal of advocacy, adherence, or allegiance expressed in words but not backed by deeds usually used with pay

Examples of lip service in a Sentence

She paid lip service to blue-collar workers, but she did nothing to help them. So far all we've gotten from him is lip service.
Recent Examples on the Web But after promising results initially — 14 minorities were hired as full-time head coaches between 2003 and 2011 — teams have done little more than pay lip service to the rule. Nancy Armour, USA TODAY, "Opinion: NFL owners know the league has a diversity problem and they don't care," 9 Jan. 2020 This routine shows that narrative isn’t lip service. Andy Greder, Twin Cities, "Gophers coach P.J. Fleck’s specialty is mixing fun with football," 6 Sep. 2019 The issue arises in trying to convince those at the DNC to relax into the new era, even if only fractionally, and give their communities not just lip service, but actual consideration. Nick Martin, The New Republic, "Democrats Need to Decide Whether They Care About Muslim Voters," 4 Sep. 2019 Waldman’s anti-hero, up-and-coming writer Nate, exemplifies the would-be progressive male intellectuals who pay lip service to feminism while merrily enjoying and perpetuating the misogyny of the literary world. Max De Haldevang, Quartz, "To be a better ally, I gave up reading books by men for 2019," 27 Dec. 2019 My employer pays a lot of lip service to being a hospitable and inclusive workplace. Rob Walker, The Seattle Times, "Asking for a raise when the boss won’t hear of it," 25 Oct. 2018 But many Afghans suspect the group is simply paying lip service to the international community. Jane Ferguson, The New Yorker, "Peace Talks, the Taliban, and Afghan Women’s Uncertain Future," 19 Dec. 2019 Trump at least is, [while] everyone else gave it lip service. Rolfe Winkler, WSJ, "LinkedIn’s Co-Founder Warns of Perils in Regulating Big Tech," 26 Sep. 2018 That’s the first thing is giving formal training and not just giving lip service, but having something there. Washington Post, "School, fatherhood, football connect former Temple teammates," 15 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lip service.' 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 lip service

1590, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for lip service

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The first known use of lip service was in 1590

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Statistics for lip service

Last Updated

22 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Lip service.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 22 January 2020.

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More Definitions for lip service

lip service


English Language Learners Definition of lip service

: support for someone or something that is expressed by someone in words but that is not shown in that person's actions

More from Merriam-Webster on lip service

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lip service

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