What Crap Did We Search for This Year?

Dennis Faas's picture

So, who is it that we can't get enough of while surfing the worldwide web? Whose life, what toys, and which topics pique our interests the most?

It's no surprise that Americans are obsessed with celebrity and celebrities. That's why it may not be particularly shocking to hear that 2007's most searched term was none other than 'Britney Spears', the blonde Louisianan who went from dorm room poster queen to bearing the brunt of international snickers over the course of one really poor life decision. Let's face it, Spears has become that highway accident we can't bear to miss. Funny thing is, in this case it's a once-glorious sexy red Ferrari wrapped around the light pole. (Source: allheadlinenews.com)

Google's own top 10 search list, released last Tuesday, includes a variety of social networking sites, celebrities, and action flicks. Most notable in each of these categories include Facebook, Anna Nicole Smith (don't forget her tragic situation last year), and the Transformers movie. Yep, the Transformers movie was the most-searched film of 2007. And you wonder why Michael Bay keeps getting hired.

Yahoo!'s recent list of terms is also celebrity-oriented, but beyond that reflects prominent world events. Visitors to the search engine sought out information on Saddam Hussein, Iran, Iraq, and oil prices. The Virginia Tech massacre also roped in the world's attention.

So, what's the point of all this interest in our collective search for gossip? Is it as random and useless as the celebrities we search for?

According to Yahoo! Web Life Editor Heather Cabot, it's not completely pointless. "Searches can give us insight into a culture in motion...People weren't just buzzing about celebrity. More than ever, they sought to be environmentally responsible, [and they] were using the Web to find out about food and product safety and getting the scoop on the latest gadgets." (Source: forbes.com)

Granted, it's good to know we're also interested in nutrition, the environment, and technology. Unfortunately, we don't get to that stuff until it's been made absolutely clear what it was Paris Hilton had for breakfast.

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