mis·​di·​rect | \ ˌmis-də-ˈrekt How to pronounce misdirect (audio) , -(ˌ)dī- \
misdirected; misdirecting; misdirects

Definition of misdirect

transitive verb

1 : to give a wrong direction to
2 : to direct wrongly misdirected their energies

Examples of misdirect in a Sentence

Their mail was misdirected to our address. If he tells you he's not interested, he's trying to misdirect you.
Recent Examples on the Web The gameplay rewards cunning and deception with the freedom to pass more than once behind the line of scrimmage and misdirect opponents. Gieson Cacho, Star Tribune, "Sloppiness mars improvements in 'Madden NFL 21'," 9 Sep. 2020 The play-fake followed by keeper/rollout action misdirected and slowed the Eagles’ four-man pass rush. Rich Campbell, chicagotribune.com, "5 observations from rewatching the Bears’ loss to the Eagles, including repeated self-destruction on first-and-10 and Tarik Cohen’s funk," 6 Nov. 2019 Maybe the pandemic is revealing that the techlash was misdirected all along. Elizabeth M. Renieris, Wired, "Forget the Techlash. The Lawlash Is Long Overdue," 30 Apr. 2020 If anything, the levels of outrage may be misdirected. Ann Killion, SFChronicle.com, "Sign stealing vs. steroid scandal: Hall of Fame voters left to decide," 22 Feb. 2020 What’s different today is that Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and a wide spectrum of sources has the ability to amplify and misdirect the flow of information, for better and for worse. Howard Markel, Wired, "With Covid-19, Tech Is Making History Repeat Itself," 4 Mar. 2020 The candidates’ body language is rehearsed, as is quickly changing the subject, ignoring questions, or misdirecting the audience’s attention. Michael J. Socolow, Quartz, "Why US presidential debates are designed to be boring," 19 Dec. 2019 Etiquette accepts this by inventing the fiction that perhaps the communication was misdirected to spam or the receiver is not an expert at modern technology. Washington Post, "Miss Manners: Old friend doesn’t want to reconnect," 22 Jan. 2020 An ad in the Waze navigation app is misdirecting motorists headed to Atlantic City’s Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa into the wilderness of New Jersey’s Pine Barrens, police said. Washington Post, "Federal workers show interest in private tech jobs, according to Indeed," 22 Jan. 2020

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

1603, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for misdirect

Time Traveler

The first known use of misdirect was in 1603

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Statistics for misdirect

Last Updated

15 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Misdirect.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misdirect. Accessed 30 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for misdirect


How to pronounce misdirect (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of misdirect

: to use or direct (something) in a way that is not correct or appropriate
: to send (someone or something) to the wrong place
: to give (someone) incorrect information


mis·​di·​rect | \ ˌmis-də-ˈrekt How to pronounce misdirect (audio) \
misdirected; misdirecting

Kids Definition of misdirect

: to send to the wrong place The mail was misdirected.

More from Merriam-Webster on misdirect

Nglish: Translation of misdirect for Spanish Speakers

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