Most Googled People of 2011 Show Everyone Loves a Trainwreck

googleYou didn't think you were going to be able to make it through this fine day in December without hearing about another "end of year" list, did you? Well, this one's a good one. It comes to us from Google -- Google Zeitgeist, more specifically -- and it reveals the top 10 Google searches of 2011.

Prepare to be shocked, people. And disappointed. And really, really -- really -- embarrassed at what the number one Googled thing was.


You can see the full list here, but here are the four I find most ... telling.

Steve Jobs, #9. The death of the Apple CEO was big news in 2011, so no surprise that he made the list. It's just sad that, with everything he's contributed to society, this is the reason he made the list. Of course, everyone wants to know what happened, how he died, etc. -- that's human nature -- but, I don't know, it just exudes a sort of gawking, rubber-necking kind of feeling. It's also a little unsettling that Battlefield 3, a video game that came in at number 5, was much more searched than him.

Casey Anthony, #4. No shocker here. Everybody loves a good murder story -- and everybody loves to get all up in arms when someone they think totally committed a crime goes free. Note that Amanda Knox, who everyone's seemed to take to, did not make the list.

Ryan Dunn, #3. The former Jackass star's death earned him a top spot on Google's most searched list. The thing I find most surprising about this is it's not like Dunn was a massive celebrity. Of course he was well-known, but to a very specific demographic. I think part of what made him so searched was his age (he was only 34 when he died), and the fact that he was associated with the stunt show, Jackass -- a program that promotes idiotic, dangerous behavior. I'm sure people assumed that Dunn died partaking in something abnormal. Even when they found out he was killed in a car crash, I think people were intrigued because they learned he was both drinking beforehand and speeding.

Rebecca Black, #1. No! Say it isn't so. The no-talent, random girl who put out some silly little song came in as the most Googled of 2011. Why? I don't get it. Since Black burst onto the scene, I haven't been able to put my finger on why anyone in their right mind was remotely interested in her. She's a kid being a kid. Yeah, her song sucked, but was it that hilarious to everyone that they Googled her that much? I don't understand. Rebecca Black is not interesting, plain and simple.  

What I've taken from these people being among the most searched of 2011 is that people like to read and learn about those who are worse off than them -- be it because they're deceased or because they're someone who's been labeled a "joke," a "trainwreck," or "the most hated woman in America."

People like to feel good about themselves. So they Google.

Are you surprised by this list?


Image via Robert Scoble/Flickr

Read More >