What topic sparked the most interest online this year? No, it wasn’t Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton or the 2016 election. Click through the gallery to see what America Googled in 2016.
10. Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton came closer than any other person to becoming the first female president of the United States and generated a ton of news coverage and Google searches along the way. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
All throughout the year, people were Googling the election: who won the primaries, who was up in the polls at any given moment, who won the debates, what time their polling place opened and, yes, who won the presidential election. (AP Photo/Marco Garcia)
Donald Trump shocked the political world with his election night victory. Even before that, he generated more news headline than just about anyone with his tweets, his debate performances and his policy proposals. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
7. David Bowie
The music icon died in January at 69 following a 18-month battle with cancer that had been kept out of the public spotlight. Bowie died just two days after releasing his last album. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens, File)
Simone Biles and the rest of the women’s gymnastics team dominated; Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps made history; Ryan Lochte made headlines for his outside-the-pool antics. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum, File)
5. Slither.io The Massively Multiplayer Online Game in which players try to grow the longest snake by consuming pellets that pop up on the screen and defeating other players hit the top of the Apple App Store charts and ranked in the top five Google searches. (AP File Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
(AP/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
4. Pokemon Go The gaming craze sent scores of smartphone-wielding players worldwide into the streets trying to catch ’em all. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)
3. Hurricane Matthew
The destructive category 5 hurricane slammed into the Caribbean and the southern U.S. in late September and early October. The storm devastated parts of Haiti, but its wrath mostly spared Florida. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
2. Prince The music legend died in April at age 57. Toxicology reports later concluded the singer died from an accidental opioid overdose. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara, File)
1. Powerball The No. 1 most searched topic in 2016 was the billion-dollar Powerball lottery drawing, according to a rankings of users’ searches released by the search giant this year. In January, lottery officials announced the weekly Powerball jackpot had grown to $1.6 billion — the largest ever — sparking a ton of Google searches from hopeful players. (AP Photo/Ben Margot, File)
WASHINGTON — What topic sparked the most interest online this year? No, it wasn’t Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton or the 2016 election. Forget the drama-filled Olympics and the Pokemon Go phenomenon.
The No. 1 most searched topic in 2016 was the billion-dollar Powerball lottery drawing, according to a rankings of users’ searches released by the search giant this year.
In January, lottery officials announced the weekly Powerball jackpot had
grown to $1.6 billion — the largest ever — sparking a ton of Google searches from hopeful players. A smaller (relatively speaking) $429 million jackpot later in the year also sent lottery hopefuls to Googling.
Prince’s shocking death in April at 57 came in at No. 2 on the list, followed by Hurricane Matthew, Pokemon Go and the online multiplayer game “Slither.io” rounded out the top five searches.
Google also broke out the top 10 specific news stories of the year based on people’s searches.
No. 1 was the
Rio Olympics, which generated a ton of coverage and controversy, not least because of Ryan Lochte’s outside-the-pool antics. The 2016 election came in at No. 2 followed by the shooting in June at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, the “ Brexit” vote in the U.K. to leave the European Union, and the Zika virus rounding out the top five.
Google’s competitor Yahoo
also released a list of top 2016 searches. No. 1 on the list was the 2016 election followed by Donald Trump in second place. Hillary Clinton, placed 10th on the list.
In general, Yahoo users appeared more interested in celebrities. Top searches on the site included two Kardashians, Gwen Stefani and even, inexplicably, Jodie Sweetin, who co-starred in the “Fuller House” reboot series.
“Pop culture really dominated our list and always sort of does,” Amy Wicks with Yahoo, told WTOP.
Here are top 10 searches and news stories as ranked by Yahoo. For Google’s list of the top searches scroll through the photo gallery above.
Yahoo’s most searched terms in 2016
WTOP’s Chris Cichon contributed to this report.
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