I think I've finally figured out why Rebecca "Friday" Black blew up so big on Twitter recently: because 'Becca and 'Witter are a lot alike, in that they both like to point out the totally obvious. Like, this morning the Twittersphere apparently asked itself, W.W.R.B.D.? (What Would Rebecca Black Do?) Rebecca Black would, of course, note that today is Friday, and so "Hello Friday" trended on Twitter all morning. (A typical tweet: "@PrachiRai: Hello Friday i've been waiting for you.") If we're lucky, "Hello Saturday" will trend tomorrow. On Sunday, I personally plan on tweeting "Hello Sunday." But on Monday, I will change the wording slightly. Instead of tweeting "Hello Sunday," I will tweet "Hello Monday" (see what I did there?). On Tuesday ...
Our weekly Top 10 Trending Topics on Twitter chart -- produced, as always, with our editorial partner What the Trend (WTT) -- cuts off Thursday night at midnight, and because last Friday was April Fool's Day, yep, it's right near the top of our list. "I was surprised that April Fool's Day was such a big deal on Twitter," WTT trend analyst Liz Pullen tells me, "but it was primarily due to Google's Gmail Motion and Helvetica/Comic Sans searches, although there were a lot of other April Fool's Day internet jokes."
By the way, this week the gang at The Next Web clued me into another bit of Google tomfoolery: Try typing 'tilt' or 'askew' into Google Search on your smartphone.
But back to our chart. Pullen points out that "Twitter loves observing special days: anniversaries of births, deaths, when bands formed, broke up, when records were released, national holidays, religious observations, feasts, saints' days -- basically anything, large or small, that makes today different from the other 364 days of the year. It's especially customary in Brazil, which yesterday celebrated, get this, #DiaDoJornalista -- Journalists' Day." (By the way, China also celebrates its own Journalists' Day -- on Nov. 8 each year.)
Though no individual celebrities made our Top 10 list, a dead one -- Kurt Cobain -- came pretty close; according to What the Trend, he was the 18th biggest topic on Twitter this week because the 17th anniversary of his death was Tuesday.
As for what occupies fully half of top 10 list this week, goofy hashtag trends, well, they're yet more proof that (as I noted last December) Twitter has pretty much officially become a gaming platform.
How is this chart made? See Notes, below.
|1||#SinceWeBeingHonest||3||10,582||People are tweeting things that they should be honest about.|
|2||April Fool's Day||2||5,669||April 1st was April Fool's Day and people & websites played practical jokes. Most popular were Google's Gmail Motion and using Google to search for Helvetica and Comic Sans.|
|3||#ILoveWhen||2||4,719||Things, people or activities you love.|
|4||#StuffThatPissesMeOff||2||4,156||People are tweeting what just sets them off.|
|5||#NoteToFemales||2||3,189||People are posting notes to female followers.|
|6||#IDontBelieveYou||1||2,989||Why a user doesn't believe "you."|
|7||Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards||1||2,306||Nickelodeon's 24th Annual Kids' Choice Awards were held on April 2, 2011 at 8 p.m. ET at the Galen Center at the University of Southern California. Fans were excited that Miley Cyrus & Selena Gomez won awards.|
|8||NCAA March Madness||1||2,182||College basketball fans watched the Final Four games and the NCAA finals between Butler & UConn and Notre Dame & Texas A&M. Generating the most talk were women's players, Skylar Diggins and Maya Moore.|
|9||Academy of Country Music Awards||1||2,077||Country music fans watched the ACMs and were enthusiastic about Taylor Swift winning Entertainer of the Year.|
|10||U.S. politics/government shutdown||1||2,054||U.S. legislators are working to see if any compromise can be reached before a possible government shutdown. There were also many people following the Wisconsin Supreme Court election, which was very close.|
1. WTT tracks the appearance of topics on the Twitter Trending Topics list and each week ranks the subjects with the most cumulative staying power. Explanations of trends are solicited from WTT users, Wikipedia-style; a community-voting system is designed to highlight the best explanations while burying lame or prank explanations.
2. For the purposes of this chart, we collect and process data until 12 midnight EST on Thursday night before each Friday's publication.
3. Ad Age works with WTT to consolidate multiple threads of chatter into one position on the chart when it's clear related Twitter conversations are basically all about the same topic, even if they use different keywords.
4. In WTT's proprietary trend-tracking system, points are awarded for both duration and rank in the top 10 trending topics on Twitter. The longer the duration, and the higher the overall rank, the more points are awarded. Measurements are taken in five-minute increments.
5. The crowdsourced trend explanations above are quoted as they appear on WTT, and therefore may have stylistic and grammatical quirks that don't adhere to normal Ad Age editorial standards.
For more information about What the Trend, visit the WTT FAQ. And check out WTT's Week in Review, compiled by its in-house editors and covering an expanded general list of Top 20 trends (including hashtag trends) here.
Simon Dumenco is the "Media Guy" media columnist for Advertising Age. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco.