Rob Ford tops Google’s 2013 zeitgeist in Canada

This year we witnessed the struggle for survival of a former Canadian tech giant, pitched battles for the telecom market, rampant meta data gathering and the spectre of government surveillance looming over our heads. Yet, what consumed Canadians in 2013 were the details of the twist and turns of the drama surrounding the mayor of Canada’s largest city.

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford topped Google’s 2013 zeitgeist, its annual list of the most commonly searched terms and most commonly searched Canadians on the browser.

After reports of the existence of a video showing the mayor smoking crack cocaine came out in the media in May, Ford has been front page material for dailies in Canada and around the world, constant discussion topic in talk shows and favourite fodder for late night comedy talk shows.

Thorsten Heins, former BlackBerry CEO who launched the phone maker’s latest line of smart phones didn’t make it to the top 10 trending list or top 10 Canadian list. The same goes for John Chen, the CEO named to replace him.

The entry of foreign wireless service companies into the Canadian telecom space was a hot topic a few months back was apparently not hot enough for Google’s  “What is” search list.

What got people all hot and bothered was “twerking,” the rear end pumping dance move showed off by singer Miley Cyrus at this year’s Video Music Awards.

A few tech terms made it to the “What is list”though.

What is BBM?” was number four, “what is Bitcoin?” made it to number six and “what is snapchat?” (the photo messaging application), made it to number eight.

View the full Google 2013 Zeitgeist list here


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Nestor E. Arellano
Nestor E. Arellano
Toronto-based journalist specializing in technology and business news. Blogs and tweets on the latest tech trends and gadgets.

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