[ hwuht-uh-bou-tiz-uhm, wuht‐, hwot‐, wot‐ ]
/ ˌʰwʌt əˈbaʊ tɪz əm, ˌwʌt‐, ˌʰwɒt‐, ˌwɒt‐ /


a conversational tactic in which a person responds to an argument or attack by changing the subject to focus on someone else’s misconduct, implying that all criticism is invalid because no one is completely blameless: Excusing your mistakes with whataboutism is not the same as defending your record.

Origin of whataboutism

First recorded in 2000–05; from the phrase what about? + -ism
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020