What do you call someone who knows all the gossip and stories about people in his neighborhood or surroundings, someone who’s always informed. It doesn't have to be expressed in a word. Could be a sentence (e.g. she knows the ins and outs), but I’m looking for a better way to express it.

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    Not exactly, but you could say sentinel (rather sarcastically, or humorously) because a sentinel is a person who keeps a constant watch. It is implied that he is the one to first bring news of any new developments on the front. "And here comes the sentinel, he's got all the latest news." – Kris Jul 24 '18 at 10:01
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    Welcome to EL&U! You could help folks give you more targeted answers by including some specifics about how you want to use the term. For example, do you want a phrase that's insulting, complimentary, or neutral? An example sentence showing how you would use the term is also usually helpful, with a ___ or other placeholder where the word/phrase should go. Good luck! – 1006a Jul 24 '18 at 14:21
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    Are you specifically talking about gossip? Or someone who knows gossip, but is also keeping up with the non-gossip news i.e. newspapers, news magazines, etc.? – BruceWayne Jul 24 '18 at 17:38
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    You have asked for an adjective, but you told WendyG below that "gossip" [noun] would work "perfectly". As was suggested by your question. Voting to close as unclear. – Cascabel Jul 24 '18 at 22:12
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    You already used the word gossip in your question, thereby ruling it out implicitly. If you think that word "fits the meaning perfectly," then I agree with @Cascabel that your question is unclear. – Jason Bassford Supports Monica Jul 25 '18 at 1:07

11 Answers 11


You could descirbe them as being in the know. While this often refers to someone knowing confidential information, it can also extend to someone who is just generally well informed.

Collins Dictionary

If you are in the know about something, especially something that is not known about or understood by many people, you have information about it.

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    well-informed. 1 : having extensive knowledge especially of current topics and events. – Mazura Jul 24 '18 at 17:05
  • @Mazura Aha, doesn't quite get across the casual phrasing seemingly desired. – Freddie R Jul 24 '18 at 17:08
  • Agreed. It answers the title, but then they started talking about gossip. Change "news" to gossip and then it's probably a dupe. – Mazura Jul 24 '18 at 17:10

The usual saying is that they have their ear to the ground.

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I would just call them a gossip

gossip NOUN

1.2 derogatory count noun: A person who likes talking about other people's private lives.

This is for people whose information comes from a 3rd party, not directly from source.

You don't have to repeat information to be a gossip though, just receive it.

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  • Thank you. It's fits the meaning perfectly in the context im writing. – Roland Haddad Jul 24 '18 at 11:28
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    @RolandHaddad I will note that "gossip" as a noun has distinct negative connotation (you can see that it's marked derogatory in the given definition), and it often implies that they aren't a particularly reliable source of news. If that's what you needed, then it is indeed the right word. – Kamil Drakari Jul 24 '18 at 13:13
  • @RolandHaddad also worth pointing out that your word request only mentions that the person knows the information (they have their ear to the ground/they are in the know), not that they like to share it (they are a gossip). A personal example: I know a lot about the personal lives and secrets of people in my organization/friend group because I am known to not be a gossip, so they feel comfortable sharing that information with me. – KernelPanic Jul 24 '18 at 15:50

(one's) finger on the pulse TFD

A keen awareness of current trends and happenings.

Sara really has her finger on the pulse of the neighborhood, so I would ask her.

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This idiom:

She's very plugged in to what happens with the neighborhood.

From Dictionary.com

Plugged in - closely connected; in touch with what is going on; informed; involved

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A rather fancy word for an inquisitive and gossipy person is quidnunc.

Definition: http://www.dictionary.com/browse/quidnunc

a person who is eager to know the latest news and gossip; a gossip or busybody.

Note that this is a noun. It's also rather uncommon in modern usage.

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  • Well I'm writing subtitles so I doubt may people would get it. Good word anyway! :) – Roland Haddad Jul 25 '18 at 9:15

[He/She] knows where all the bodies are buried.

This is a common expression in the US when referring to a person who knows seemingly everything about everyone -- especially secret things that certain people would not want revealed.

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In New York City, the Yiddish loanword yenta is often used:

  1. A woman who meddles in the business of others; a busybody; a female gossipmonger.


I don’t know how well known this is outside of New York; the English-language meaning of it doesn’t really match the Yiddish meaning of the word (which is more like “gentlewoman,” I believe), and comes from Jewish–American theater (first in a 1920 Broadway play Yenta Telebenta, most famously in the 1964 Fiddler on the Roof, where the busybody matchmaker is named Yenta).

The original word is feminine, and so is the stereotypical yenta, but I have absolutely heard the word applied to men, too.

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  • FWIW, I'm Canadian and I've never heard the word in my life. – wjandrea Jul 26 '18 at 1:13

Someone who knows all the news can be described, perhaps a bit humorously, as OMNISCIENT (knowing everything about everything/everyone).

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A person who has or knows all the news is a news junkie.

A person can be gossip junkie, too. Why not?

In some context, this might fit the bill.

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I recall hearing (NPR) about American words borrowed from the native language of slaves such as from African is the word hepacat (I think that I have spelled it correctly) “someone who is knowledgable about what is going on” from which is derived hepcat which leads to hipcat finally hip

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