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Thursday, December 01, 2011
Yahoo Spotlights 2011's Perplexing Newsmakers


Today Yahoo announced the 10th anniversary edition of its Year in Review, the annual look-back that identifies the top stories and trends of the year based on visitors' activity on the network.

The annual look-back of aggregated visitor activity is a gauge for worldwide interests.

The top search term of 2011 in the U.S. didn't go to a person or a news event, but to Apple's iPhone, which led the 2011 search queries, bypassing a reality TV star's marriage and pending divorce, a notorious criminal defendant, and America's most wanted terrorist.

"The iPhone transcended gadget status," says Vera Chan, senior editor and Web trend analyst at Yahoo!. "The device helped facilitate political movements around the world, and embodied the vision of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. Fueled by news that he had stepped down as CEO in August, and then that he had passed away in October, searches for Steve Jobs skyrocketed on Yahoo. By their nature, breaking news stories don't always crack the Top 10 list. People don't have to search for details they get in the news, and it's rare that a news story ends up on the overall list. Yet this year, Casey Anthony, Osama bin Laden, and the Japanese earthquake and tsunami all figured into the top ranking."

Women in pop culture dominated the Top 10 list. Kim Kardashian, who first appeared in 2009 filling in the Paris Hilton celebutante role, jumped to No. 3. Jennifer Lopez cracked the Top 10 after a nine-year absence, thanks to her "American Idol"-fueled comeback. And singer Katy Perry reaped musical nominations and either tied or broke record sales.

Top Searches on Yahoo! in 2011 (U.S.)

1. iPhone
2. Casey Anthony
3. Kim Kardashian
4. Katy Perry
5. Jennifer Lopez
6. Lindsay Lohan
7. American Idol
8. Jennifer Aniston
9. Japan earthquake
10. Osama bin Laden

In the U.K, the top searches list reveals that the two themes obsessing the nation in 2011 - just as in 2010 and 2009 - are economic instability and the antics of celebrities.

The Top Ten of searches for 2011 (last year's numbers in brackets)

1. FTSE (new entry)
2. National Lottery (#1)
3. Job Centre (#2)
4. Katie Price (#9)
5. Cheryl Cole (no change)
6. EastEnders (new entry)
7. X Factor (new entry)
8. Big Brother (new entry)
9. iPhone 5 (new entry)
10. Kate Middleton (new entry)

The Canadian dollar captivated Canada's attention as Canadians went on a wild ride of all-time highs, while the battle for smartphone supremacy heated up with homegrown BlackBerry maker RIM taking a hit. With a wedding and month-long, cross-country tour, Prince William and his new bride charmed Canadians, and a popular reality star's marriage ups and downs fascinated searchers.

Yahoo! Canada's Top 10 Searches in 2011:

1. Canadian Dollar
2. RIM
3. Canada Post
4. William & Kate
5. American Idol
6. Kim Kardashian
7. Census 2011
8. UFC
9. Pippa Middleton
10. Scarlett Johansson

For additional information visit Yahoo's 2011 Year In Review web page.


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