Google released its 11th annual “Zeitgeist”– the top most globally searched terms of 2011. From viral stars to a tech pioneer, see who dominated the web.
1- Rebecca Black: the 14-year was thrown into the spotlight after her music video for her single, ‘Friday’, became viral gold receiving over 167 million views on YouTube.
2- Google+ : Google’s launch of their own social networking platform in June 2011 had everyone searching and wondering whether it would indeed be a Facebook killer. But with over 40 million users as of October, it still has a ways to go. Follow What’s Trending on Google+ right now!
3- Ryan Dunn: The Jackass star who we all got to know for his crazy stunts, lost his life in a car accident June 20, 2011 as the age of 34.
4- Casey Anthony: The world watched closely as the young mother was charged with first degree murder for the death of her 2-year old daughter Caylee, whose remains were discovered near her home in Florida. Anthony was then found not guilty on July 5, 2011. According to Google, “Casey Anthony and related searches like Casey Anthony Case grew 2,680% from 2010 to 2011.”
5- Battlefield 3: The EA first person shooter game had a ton of pre-launch buzz with gamers and techies alike. It gained popularity during its release on October 23, 2011, which helped the game quickly sell 5 million copies within the first week.
6- iPhone 5: While Apple never released an iPhone 5, many fanboys and girls were anticipating the announcement at its event on October 4th, causing the search term to spike. Instead, Apple revealed its iPhone 4S including a bigger screen, edge-to-edge glass, an 8 megapixel camera, and extensive voice controls.
7- Adele: The 22-year old UK singer-songwriter stormed onto the music scene and took the online world by storm with the release of her sophomore album “21”. According to Google, Adele spiked the week of August 28, 2011, when she performed her ballad of “Someone Like You” at the MTV Video Music Awards proving TV appearances can still go a long way.
8- Tepco: The Fukushima I Nuclear Plant was on top of search results after the Japanese government announced that several nuclear reactors had been damaged from an 8.9 magnitude Earthquake on March 11, 2011. The destruction caused the government to order the evacuation of thousands of local residents.
9- Steve Jobs: The Apple co-founder and icon who revolutionized modern day computing and design with creations like the Mac computers, iPod, iPhone, iTunes and iPad passed away on October 5th, 2011 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. According to Google, “People’s interest in the Apple co-founder exceeded their fascination with American President Barack Obama through all of 2011.”
10- iPad 2: It seems the impact of Apple reached a height in 2011. The iPad 2 hit its peak “the week of February 27, 2011, two weeks before Apple began selling the device on the web and in retail stores.” The device also made headlines selling over 500,000 units its first weekend of release. It was such a hot item that one Chinese teenager even sold his kidney to snag one.