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12/12/12 Google Zeitgeist Shows Top Google Searches in 2012

Google has just compiled its 12th annual Zeitgeist — its list of top global trending searches for the year — and guess what? Somehow, the search term “Gangnam Style” didn’t make it to the top of the pile.

Google Zeitgeist 2011 12/12/12 Google Zeitgeist Shows Top Google Searches in 2012

Instead, that honor goes to the late singer “Whitney Houston”, who beat K-Pop star Psy’s hit song down into second place as the most searched-for thing on the web this year, just ahead of “Hurricane Sandy” in third, and “iPad 3”, which came in fourth.

Houston’s untimely death last February resulted in an explosion of web users searching for information about her fate, and it seems that her popularity has endured throughout the remainder of the year.

“While there are perennial themes – ‘what is love?’ topped the list in ten countries – it’s the unusual and surprising that caught our attention in 2012,” explains Amit Singhal on the Google Blog.

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Whitney Houston topped Google’s list of global search trends for 2012

Had Ms Houston not passed away, first place would have almost certainly belonged to “Gangnam Style”, the global dance phenomenon which has attracted more than 930 million views on YouTube to become that site’s most-watched video of all time.

“PSY’s ‘Gangnam Style’ signature dance took the world by storm,” added Singhal.

But our interests certainly weren’t just limited to pop stars in 2012. Natural disasters are always a big hit on search engines whenever we’re unfortunate enough to fall victim to them, as “Hurricane Sandy” illustrates by its third place rank. Meanwhile, the inclusion of “iPad 3” in the top four shows that no matter how many Android devices Samsung wheel into the stores, they’ll probably never win over the legions of iOS devotees.

Gangnam style 12/12/12 Google Zeitgeist Shows Top Google Searches in 2012

Gangnam Style also featured prominently in this year’s Zeitgeist

Google’s Zeitgeist has been rolling out around this time each year ever since 2001, and gives us an array of insights into the biggest search trends around the globe.

The term “election 2012” was the third most-searched for trend in the United States after Whitney and Sandy. Sadly for our favorite rapper Psy, netizens in the US weren’t ‘quite’ so impressed with the originality of his dance routines, as “Gangnam Style” slipped down to a lowly eighth place.

Events and people are the two categories that almost always top the list of trending searches, and so it’s interesting to see that Princess Kate Middleton, aka the Duchess of Cambridge, featured highly in both of these lists. “Kate Middleton” was the second-most searched for person in 2012, whilst “Kate Middleton Pictures Released” (we’re assuming the wedding photos and not the topless ones) came in second in the list of events.

 

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Hurricane Sandy led to a flurry of searches late in the year

Lastly, one new inclusion in Google’s Zeitgeist this year is the list of top trending Google+ hashtags, which reveals that more than just a few people are in agreement with Google that the web should remain ‘free and open’. The most popular hashtag this year was “#SOPA”, followed by the slightly unoriginal “#Awesome”, with “#Sandy” once again rearing its ugly head in third place.

 

Image credits: Whitney Houston, by asterix61 via flickr.com, ‘Gangnam Style’ by KOREA.NET – Official page of the Republic of Korea via flickr.com, and Hurricane Sandy by Mechanik via Fotolia.com

 12/12/12 Google Zeitgeist Shows Top Google Searches in 2012
Mike Wheatley is an independent freelance writer, professional blogger, and social media enthusiast from the UK. A journalism graduate of Nottingham University, Mike enjoys travelling the world, funding his lifestyle via writing on PR News, technology, sports, and current affairs. Mike writes for several International publications including; The Epoch Times, Everything PR News, RealzyBiz News, Argophilia Travel News, Silicon Angle, and others.

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4 thoughts on “12/12/12 Google Zeitgeist Shows Top Google Searches in 2012

  1. If you did deeper, Zeitgeist reveals a lot of interesting data on what the world is searching for. Its not surprising to see Gangnam style to be the #2. Released only in the second half of the year, this song has grabbed the attention of people across the globe breaking barriers of language. Here’s an interesting analysis of the possible reasons behind its success – http://bit.ly/VfmcpT

  2. Google Zeitgeist reveal its trend as usual but Gangnam style shows its popularity in just 6 months . Its a big thing to be popular in Google trend or Youtube in Just 6 months. Hats off to PSY.

  3. Compared to the zeitgeist 2011 , 2012 is nothing but a casual year

    in the field of SEO which concern us it was stormy , many updates had taken away some Big fishes out of the game

  4. Hi mikey .. i read your blog regularly … google zeitgeist is a wonderful tools which i used last year i hope 2013 zeitgeist is more affective..