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Aol’s Top Searches List Fluffy Pop Culture

AOL’s Top 2004 Searches are Pop Culture Fluff This AOL top Searches list is depressing. Pop culture may be bigger at AOL where they pander to that crowd, but sheesh! The list of bimbo’s and celebrities is donwright sad. To think that the biggest issues searched at AOL are Super Bowl flashes by Janet Jackson and dim simpletons from the music and movie world just plain saddens me.

One top ten list I was happy to see was the Merriam Websters top ten most searched words of 2004, except maybe the first one, “blog”.

1. blog

2. incumbent

3. electoral

4. insurgent

5. hurricane

6. cicada

7. peloton : noun (1951) : the main body of riders in a bicycle race

8. partisan

9. sovereignty

10. defenestration

We’re bound to be hit with dozens of stupid Top 10 _____ of 2004 lists. I hope there are more that demonstrate something substantial about us, and less that show shallowness and stupidity like that AOL Search list.

The weekly WordTracker top 500 word list is sometimes interesting, but most often the same. Sometimes the order changes slightly and big news always sees a spike in searches for the latest disaster or crime or atrocity to occur within reach of news cameras.

On September 16 of 2001, I lamented that my job as an SEO had me seeing searches about the Terrorist attacks at the top of the list of most searched phrases that week. I compared the top 300 search words for September 15, 2001 and a week earlier from September 8, 2001 Yahoo was displaced from it’s top position and pushed down to number 4 on the list by frantic searches for what was then a strange new name to most of us, Osama Bin Laden. Interestingly, Google now tops Yahoo as the most frequently searched word.

I discussed how the frequency and order of top searches changed dramatically that awful week and noted that we seemed much more introspective and thoughtful, but still sought escape in the fluff of pop culture. My weekly newsletter was about the change in those searches after the traumatic events of September 11, 2001. My favorite observations from back then was the following,

“While the commercial phrase “airline tickets” maintains a position around the 50th most frequently searched terms in a normal week, it is nowhere to be found on the list this week above position 500. Neither are there many searches for products as there have been in recent weeks.

We often seek comfort and enjoyment from animals and the terms “dogs”, “cats” and “horses” usually find their way onto the

most frequently searched terms list. Only “dogs” remain this week. Does that suggest they remain our best friend in difficult times too?

Here’s the top 300 keyword report from this week beside those lists from September of 2001.