Google released their 12th annual list of the top searched for items, also known as the zeitgeist report. The top trending search item was Whitney Houston, due to the tragic death of the famous pop singer.
“On our 2012 Zeitgeist website, you can explore the most popular and hottest trending search terms from around the world,” said Amit Singhal, SVP & Google Fellow. “This year’s site is our most global to date, with a total of 838 lists from 55 countries. We’ve also added a number of new features, including an interactive map that shows where and when some of the hottest terms spiked around the world, and a Google Zeitgeist Android app coming out later today (with an iOS version coming soon too).”
Jeremy Lin became the top searched for sports figure and Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner’s epic free fall jump made him the #6 globally trending person of the year. PSY’s Gangnam Style landed the #1 spot in many countries and making his song the second most trending query of 2012 and the top YouTube video of all time.
“People researched a breadth of other topics, too. Web users took a serious interest in threats to the open Internet, with proposals like SOPA and ACTA both finding their way to the top of many countries’ lists. The U.S. elections brought attention to the candidates and issues, not least the presidential campaigns’ most notorious political gaffes. And while it might not be surprising to see that tragic natural disasters like Hurricane Sandy ranked highly (#3 on the global trending list), it is reassuring to find searches like [donate to Sandy] spiking as well,” said Singhal. “We hope you enjoy exploring what people around the world were searching for in 2012. It’s quite a snapshot of what makes us human: a blend of guilty pleasures and higher pursuits.”