"Latinx," a gender-neutral term for people of Latino origin, is not well known among the people to whom it supposedly applies, according to new data from the Pew Research Center.
A survey conducted in Spanish and English in the United States in December 2019 showed that only 23% of Hispanic or Latino adults surveyed know about the term. Only 3% said they describe themselves as "Latinx," while 76% said they had never heard the term.
The Spanish language uses gender-specific words for things and people. Males of Latin American origin, for example, more popularly have been called "Latino," and females, "Latina." Some people say Latinx, a relatively new term, is a way to avoid gendered pronouns in support of transgender people. Others criticize it as being inconsistent with Spanish as a gendered language.
"Some described the term as an 'anglicism' of the Spanish language, while others say the term is 'not representative of the larger Latino community,'" Pew said.
Groups most likely to have heard the term "Latinx" include 18-29 year olds (42% have heard of it), those who have been to college (31% of those with some college experience and 38% of college graduates), those who lean toward or identify with the Democratic party (29%), and those born in the United States (32%).
The survey included about 3,000 Latino adults.
Latino, Latina, and Hispanic remain more popular as Google search terms than Latinx, Pew reports.