before or in preference to other buyers, claimants, candidates, etc.:TriStar has preemptively purchased the movie rights to Williams’ new novel, the sequel to her debut bestseller.
as a measure taken against something anticipated or feared; preventively:Knowing I’d be practicing piano for hours every day, I preemptively left polite notes for the upstairs and downstairs neighbors—with cookies attached—apologizing for the noise.
Bridge. (said of bidding) at an unnecessarily high level, as a defensive maneuver to make communication between one’s opponents more difficult:The more tricks you are certain of winning, given your hand, the higher the level at which you can bid preemptively.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use preemptively in a sentence
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Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, TikTok, Instagram and others have all taken different measures, from preemptively turning off features to silently banning hashtags.Steve Bannon’s show pulled off Twitter and YouTube over calls for violence | Devin Coldewey | November 6, 2020 | TechCrunch
New York City, the nation’s largest school district, has preemptively canceled snow days for the year, while districts from Maryland to Michigan have hinted that calling a snow day will be about as likely this winter as an all-school assembly.New Jersey school district pledges to protect at least one ritual from pandemic upheaval: The snow day | Kim Bellware | October 29, 2020 | Washington Post
The vast majority of fires happen routinely near roadsides, near utilities infrastructure, and unfortunately, before our technology, there was no way to stop them preemptively.Silicon Valley is responding to wildfire season by making firefighting more proactive | Brett Haensel | October 15, 2020 | Fortune
He also refused to say he would accept the results of the election or that he will not preemptively declare victory before all the ballots are counted.Election live updates: Debate commission says it will change structure to ensure more ‘orderly discussion’ | John Wagner, Felicia Sonmez, Amy B Wang | September 30, 2020 | Washington Post
They would either be annexed to a larger unit after defeat, or they would form one preemptively to avoid defeat.
On Monday, Freedom Works, Heritage Action, and Americans for Prosperity preemptively criticized any Ryan-Murray bipartisan deal.
Chase, the biggest retail bank in the metro area, has preemptively closed branches in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.Hurricane Sandy Grinds the Global Money Engine to a Halt | Alex Klein, Matthew Zeitlin | October 29, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST
His editorializing aside, he acknowledges that the first statement was issued "more or less" preemptively.
But historians are already preemptively dousing our enthusiasm for the Emancipation Proclamation.Did the Civil War Achieve Equality? Stephen Kantrowitz’s ‘More Than Freedom’ | Eric Herschthal | August 15, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST