Barbara Walters' Most Fascinating Person of 2011 Is Dead


Barbara Walter's Most Fascinating Person of 2011 is a little different than in previous years. Winner Steve Jobs is already dead. And even though he may have died in October, he is an obvious pick.

Jobs retired as Apple CEO and was actually selected for the honor when he first retired. But after Jobs died, the "rule" was broken for him, which seems only fitting since Jobs was not one who ever followed the rules. And the weirdest part is that he was the most deserving of anyone else on the 2011 (or 2010) list.

With the distinction of "Most Fascinating Person of the Year," Jobs joins last year's list with stars like Justin Bieber and the cast of Jersey Shore. But they are all jokes by comparison.

Jobs was something different. He was no saint. He had an illegitimate child he took years to claim and many say he was not known for being overly nice in the workplace (some even called him a "tyrant"). He was human and flawed and he had a dark side. Of course, the dark and the light coexisting is exactly what makes a person fascinating.

Jobs was complicated and there is no one way to describe him. He saw the future and he made it happen. He was a perfectionist who shaped the world into the perfection he saw on his head. Hell, he designed the computer on which I type these words. He was heroic.

Perhaps nothing sums up why he deserves this honor more than the 1997 Think Different campaign he launched soon after he came back to Apple as CEO.  He said:

Here's to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo. ... They push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the people who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world are the ones who do.

Indeed. No matter how you felt about Jobs, he changed computers, he changed the way we interact and he changed the world.

Now let's talk about the rest of the list. Other celebrities include Pippa Middleton, Katy Perry, Herman Cain, Amanda Knox, Donald Trump, Eric Stonestreet and Jesse Tyler Ferguson. About 75 percent of those are really silly, especially when compared to Jobs.

I am all for keeping the list diverse, but come on, people. How has Pippa Middleton changed the world? And what makes her fascinating? Her rear end?

It is pretty sad for the list that the deceased one is just about the only pick with substance.

What do you think of the list?


Image via Southernpixel Alby/Flickr

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Venessia Venessia

Its a joke, amanda knox... Really? Rip steve jobs.

DebaLa DebaLa

I'm not sure why we should be concerned about someone else's list or version of "fascinating people."

Jobs needed no ranking on a list; he stood — and will always stand — alone.

nonmember avatar tom

Steve Jobs = cult of personality.

nonmember avatar Me

Could they have picked a more sensationalized title for this article...?!

nonmember avatar Lori

I've never heard of two of those people so not sure who finds them fascinating. But the list is not titled "People who changed the world in 2011" so Pippa M counts as someone with whom the world was fascinated. (at least the english speaking world)

nonmember avatar Marissa

I absolutely agree that Steve Jobs gets the title hands down. Things that I used the entire time I'm awake are a direct result of him and I'm definitely not the only one.

And to the person who said "Amanda Knox...really?": Yeah, "really." If you followed the story at all or even came in on the end, you would see it was very fascinating though also very sad. Even though she got to come home ultimately, it took entirely too long because the trial was made a circus founded on a completely botched evidence collection process. It was a disservice to the young woman who was killed as well as Sollecito and Knox who spent four years wrongly imprisoned.

nonmember avatar susan martin

Steve Jobs was most certainly a extra ordinary person ,the world is full of followers and leaders and the ones that choose their own path despite the neigh sayers,critical remarks that would discourage most people that never thought within the realms of the box ,because the box was not for them to restrictive ,if not for the ones that dare to be different so many things would be so different. I hope some young people may follow the example of Steve Jobs in the way he thought and believed in himself ,his dreams ,his endurance when so many others said it could not be done !.RIP Steve Jobs O:)

nonmember avatar Zoso

It's interesting she finds people like the Jersey Shore, Justin Bieber and the Kardashians fascinating. Yet she asks them why they think they're so popular. She says they don't act, sing, dance, ect. Yet, who found them fascinating? Really Barbara? And as far as Amanda Knox, ah yeah, she deserves to be on here! I know her story from the start and the fact that she's from Seattle, I'm in Renton, so it does hit a little closer to home and we here should know more than anyone else since we've really followed it here. Yeah, she deserves to be here.

nonmember avatar kaokie

Opinions are like anuses, everybody's got one.

nonmember avatar Dahlia

For years I've been fascinated with a morbidly obese family that is extremely irresponsible, has a room in their house for the dogs to do their business in because they're too lazy to walk them, no one seems to work, yet they manage to keep on surviving, taking trips to Atlantic City, and eating out four times a week. Yes, this is fascinating to me, not because it's good or smart or right- it's quite the opposite. Fascination has nothing to do with talent or intellect.

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