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Hurricane Sandy Among Most-Googled Terms in 2012, Locally and Nationally

(Graphic by Ed Fischer)

(Graphic by Ed Fischer)

Ian Bush Ian Bush
Ian Bush is an anchor, reporter, news editor, and technology editor&nb...
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By technology editor Ian Bush

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — We “Googled” an incredible 1.2 trillion times this year.  In Philadelphia, the most-searched terms include the Sixers and Hurricane Sandy.

How does that jibe with what the rest of the world is Googling?

After her death, Whitney Houston stayed with us in song and as the top search in 2012.

“One of the things we noticed this year is that the world is becoming a smaller place than ever before,” says Google product manager Jake Hubert.  “Topics that are trending in one country are reaching places around the world.”

He says Psy’s horse-dancing, in the “Gangnam Style” video, came in at number two.

“It made almost every country’s top list,” Hubert notes. “Think back ten years, and the idea that a song in Korean would be the number-one YouTube video of all time, with over a billion views — it’s just mind-blowing.”

Hurricane Sandy was the third most-Googled term globally.

The top question?  Hubert tells KYW Newsradio it was asking about “SOPA, the copyright law that threatened the open Internet.  The Internet is the world’s largest megaphone: when you have something important to say, people will listen.”

Meanwhile, he says, “The Big Bang Theory” was trending in China this year.

“People are accessing the culture and interest that they want, no matter where it’s from,” he adds.

Then there was Felix Baumgartner, who skydived from relative obscurity to the list of top 10 trending people.

“New celebrities are being born more quickly than ever,” Hubert says.  “Maybe next year, it could be you.”

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