Yahoo releases annual list of top searches for 2012

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SUNNYVALE, Calif. Yahoo! Inc. has released the annual list of top searches. Yahoo!’s Year in Review 2012 reflects the daily search habits of users and offers a glimpse into the social trends, compelling newsmakers, top stories and viral fads of 2012 based on what millions of people searched for. 

Celebrities and technological gadgets draw plenty of online curiosity, but the 2012 elections dominated online searches this year. The elections saturated headline news and ads, but people still checked in online to see what was developing in the presidential elections, as well as their own state and local races.  

Top Searches Overall on Yahoo! in 2012:

1      [election]

2      [iphone 5]

3      [kim kardashian]

4      [kate upton]

5      [kate middleton]

6      [whitney houston]

7      [olympics]

8      [political polls]

9      [lindsay lohan]

10    [jennifer lopez]

It’s no surprise the elections preoccupied the online audience, but people obviously had time beyond their civic duties to indulge their guilty pleasures and viral compulsions. The Obsessions list has returned: iPhone 5 snagged the No. 1 slot in a list mostly dominated by pop culture trends like “The Hunger Games,” reality TV breakout Honey Boo Boo, British boy band One Direction, Carly Rae Jepsen’s much-memed song “Call Me Maybe,” and the galloping global hit “Gangnam Style” by Korean pop singer Psy. 

Top-Searched Obsessions on Yahoo! in 2012:

1      [iphone 5]

2      [political polls]

3      [megamillions]

4      [the hunger games]

5      [honey boo boo]

6      [fifty shades of grey]

7      [one direction]

8      [call me maybe]

9      [gangnam style]

10    [titanic]

The election season provided a perfect opportunity to show how quickly things can go viral. Binders full of women, eastwooding, and Big Bird memes all became viral sensations in 2012. And who can forget the stingray photobomb, and of course McKayla Maroney not being impressed.

Top-Searched Memes on Yahoo! in 2012:

1      [kony 2012]

2      [binders full of women]

3      [hurricane sandy fake storm photos]

4      [ridiculously photogenic guy]

5      [big bird]

6      [dogshaming]

7      [stingray photobomb]

8      [eastwooding]

9      [etch a sketch]

10    [mckayla maroney is not impressed]

Users were all about gadgets in 2012. From the iPhone 5 to the iPad mini and the Samsung Galaxy, folks were jonesing for the latest tech trends. 

Top-Searched Gadgets on Yahoo! in 2012:

1      [iphone 5]

2      [ipad 3]

3      [ipad mini]

4      [samsung galaxy sIII]

5      [kindle fire]

6      [iphone 4]

7      [nook]

8      [ipod touch]

9      [samsung galaxy tab]

10    [samsung galaxy note]

The top two athletes searched overall on Yahoo! in 2012 were Tiger Woods and Maria Sharapova. But all eyes turned to London this summer for the Games of the XXX Olympiad. The Olympics were a top search overall on Yahoo!, and while the “Fab Five” garnered a lot of searches, it was Maria Sharapova, Lolo Jones, Serena Williams, and Hope Solo that topped the Olympian list on Yahoo!.

Top-Searched Olympians on Yahoo! in 2012:

1      [maria sharapova]

2      [lolo jones]

3      [serena williams]

4      [hope solo]

5      [mckayla maroney]

6      [caroline wozniacki]

7      [leryn franco]

8      [michael phelps]

9      [misty may-treanor]

10    [aly raisman]

It looks like the Dallas Cowboys really are “America’s team,” as they top the list of all sports teams on Yahoo! in 2012. Even the Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders and game schedule were tops. However, it looks like MLB is giving the NFL a run for its money when it comes to being “America’s sport,” with five baseball teams in the Top 10 sports team searches.

Top-Searched Sports Teams on Yahoo! in 2012:

1      [dallas cowboys]

2      [new york yankees]

3      [los angeles lakers]

4      [san francisco giants]

5      [detroit tigers]

6      [pittsburgh steelers]

7      [green bay packers]

8      [st louis cardinals]

9      [san francisco 49ers]

10    [oakland a’s]

“Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy, but here’s my number, so call me maybe?” — It is no surprise that music newcomer Carly Rae Jepsen’s song “Call Me Maybe” became the top-searched song of 2012. The song had everyone from the Harvard baseball team to the USA Olympic swim team and even “Sesame Street” getting into the tune. “Gangnam Style” also had viral impact in 2012 and was the second-most searched song on Yahoo!.

Top-Searched Songs/Music Lyrics on Yahoo! in 2012:

1      [call me maybe] (carly rae jepsen)

2      [gangnam style] (psy)

3      [someone like you] (adele)

4      [somebody that i used to know] (gotye)

5      [sexy and i know it] (lmfao)

6      [we are young] (fun.)

7      [rolling in the deep] (adele)

8      [you belong with me] (taylor swift)

9      [what makes you beautiful] (one direction)

10    [gummy bear song] (gummibär)

The top-searched TV shows overall on Yahoo! in 2012 reflect our continued obsession with competition reality shows. Topping the list: “American Idol” followed by “Dancing With the Stars” and “The Young & the Restless.” The top-searched TV dramas were “The Walking Dead” and “Game of Thrones.” But mostly in 2012, people wanted to laugh, and the shows below represent the top-searched comedies on TV in 2012. 

Top-Searched TV Comedies on Yahoo! in 2012:

1      [the big bang theory]

2      [how i met your mother]

3      [glee]

4      [south park]

5      [family guy]

6      [modern family]

7      [adult swim]

8      [two and a half men]

9      [the simpsons]

10    [drop dead diva]

Every day on Yahoo! at 5 p.m., as folks across the country prepare for dinner, [chicken recipes] spike on Yahoo!. This staple protein was the top search in the Recipes category. Putting tradition aside, there were also a lot of searches for weird and quirky foods in 2012.

Top-Searched Recipes on Yahoo! in 2012:

1      [chicken recipes]

2      [crockpot recipes]

3      [halloween recipes]

4      [vegetarian recipes]

5      [salmon recipes]

6      [beef stew recipes]

7      [zucchini recipes]

8      [eggplant recipes]

9      [cake recipes]

10    [shrimp recipes]

For more about the Yahoo! 2012 Year in Review and other top searches, go to