They include hurricanes, sexual harassment and death
America’s top Google searches have one thing in common: bad news.
Hurricane Irma, Matt Lauer and the late singer Tom Petty were the top three lookups that caused the most traffic spikes in the U.S. this year, according to Google’s annual list of the top trending searches for 2017.
The depressing list starts with storm searchers for Hurricane Irma, the first Category 5 hurricane of the season that blew through the U.S. in late August causing catastrophic damage particularly in Florida, the northeastern part of the Caribbean, the Carolinas and Georgia and killing more than 100 victims. It was the most intense storm since Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005.
The second top search was for former “Today” show anchor Matt Lauer, who was fired from NBC last month for a complaint about inappropriate sexual behavior. Surprisingly, disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, whose alleged sexual misconduct inspired the #MeToo movement empowering women to break their silence on sexual harassment, was missing from the top trending Google searches.
Late musician and frontman of the Heartbreakers Tom Petty, who passed away in October at 66, was the No. 3 most searched figure. The “Free Fallin’” singer suffered cardiac arrest and was taken off life support at UCLA hospital in Los Angeles.
Other searches were for figures like Aaron Hernandez, the former New England Patriots football player who was convicted of murder and committed suicide in April was ninth on the list. The Las Vegas Shooting that killed at least 59 people and injured more than 500 was another dismal search.
On a lighter note, the Super Bowl placed fourth, the solar eclipse came in seventh, and fidget spinners, the handheld toy with a cult-like following said to relieve stress, ranked No. 10.
Here are the top 10 searches:
1. Hurricane Irma
2. Matt Lauer
3. Tom Petty
4. Super Bowl
5. Las Vegas Shooting
6. Mayweather vs McGregor Fight
7. Solar Eclipse
8. Hurricane Harvey
9. Aaron Hernandez
10. Fidget Spinner
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