10 biggest topics on Twitter 2012, from Whitney to Sandy…

Tis the season to be jolly, and also, almost unbearably analytical. It’s getting to that point in the year where we start to look back on the 365 days just past – and where better to begin our retrospective than the place where lolcats reign supreme? Twitter has published its biggest trends of 2012, and we’re ready to delve into them.


1. The Olympics

We did it, Britain! Whilst hosting the Summer Olympics 2012, the world managed to generate 150 million tweets about the subject, from sharing Bolt’s record-shattering celebration to gasping about the Spice Girls’ glittery closing ceremony extravaganza.

2. US Election

The world waited with baited breath, and apparently active fingers. On election day alone, the US presidency generated over 31 million tweets – the majority being pro-democrat, as opposed to pro-evil. Republican, sorry. Republican.

3. MTV Video Music Awards

14.7 million tweets were dedicated to the MTV awards, hitting a feverish peak when One Direction (yes, them) won Best Video, just beating out Gangham Style with a tear inducing 98,307 tweets per minute as they collected the award. Just as an aside, there were 52 million (just 52 million) tweet votes for the public vote for Best Video. Harnessing the people of hormonal teenage girls. That is the key to world domination.

4. The Superbowl

Continuing the trend of tweetable sporting events, The Superbowl saw 13.7 million tweets flutter around the game itself, with Madonna’s half time show garnering 108,077 tweets – presumably about how she managed to stay upright through almost all of it.

5. Euro 2012

Sport Sport Even More Sport – Spain beating Italy 4-0 in the Euro 2012 final meant  football fans tweeting furiously, gleefully, probably quite drunkenly throughout the game, hitting a peak at Juan Mata’s goal – 267,200 tweets per minute.

6. Hurricane Sandy

Interesting proof that Twitter is increasingly becoming the place we go to for up-to-date coverage on major world events, and particularly disasters. Between Oct 27 – Nov 1st there were over a million tweets sent about the build up, the storm hit and the aftermath – with hundreds of thousands of people offering ways to help those affected.

7. UEFA Champion’s League Semi-Final

And we’re back to sport. This year’s battle between Barcelona and Chelsea was watched by millions – and tweeted by fewer. But still quite a few. The Twitter-storm reached a fever pitch at Torres’ tie goal – 184,535 tweets per minute as fans  all over the world celebrated and commiserated together.

8. Summer Wars

An interesting one, this, and a fascinating insight into what might be the future of entertainment and social networking. ‘Summer Wars’ is a Japanese Anime movie that was broadcast on Nihon TV this July, and fans all over the world engaged by tweeting a line from the film at exactly the same time it was said by the main character. Will we see more of this engagement in the years to come? Watch this space…

9. Whitney Houston

The unexpected death of global superstar Whitney Houston provoked grief from all over the world – to the tune of over 10 million tweets. Twitter managed to keep hold of the trend with all circuits firing – an improvement from reporting the death of Michael Jackson; when the huge boost in tweets temporarily shut down the search functionality of the site.


Anti-piracy laws are always hot topics for the tech-savvy lovers of Twitter, and this year was no different. The introduction of the Stop Online Piracy Act caused massive debate on the twittersphere, with over 3 million hits in under 24 hours.


So there you have it, sport, tragedy, One Direction, more sport and a dash of politics. Does that sound like your Twitter year to you?

Published by


Natasha Hodgson is the Content and Community Manager over at Enternships. She loves writing about inspiring things, and Nicolas Cage. Luckily, those two things are not mutually exclusive.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *