Welcome to the Top Online Stories of 2017. Last year was so jam packed with interesting stories that we decided to wait until after the ball dropped to make sure we didn’t miss anything important.
As our team looked back on 2017 and deliberated on each category, we were reminded of the old expression: “May you live in interesting times”. Although 2017 had its fair share of controversies, social upheaval and political uncertainty, it also demonstrated how the Internet can bring people together, encourage innovation and make lives better. We were hard pressed to think of any year in recent memory where so many of our most eventful moments were experienced together, online.
Let us know what you think, or give us suggestions for other categories by joining the conversation onFacebook or on Twitter using #Distributel2017.
Not only was Barack Obama’s tweet in response to the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia the most liked in 2017, it was also the most liked in Twitter history. The tweet quotes Nelson Mandela’s autobiography and was one of four Obama tweets to land in the most liked and retweeted list of 2017.
Did you notice one statistic missing? Didn’t Obama also get the most retweets for this thoughtful and galvanizing message? No, that distinction is held by Carter Wilkerson’s chicken nugget tweetthat won the Internet.
Top Meme: Guy Blinking
“Guy Blinking” was Tenor’s most used GIF of 2017. The GIF features video producer Drew Scanlon and originated from the gaming website Giant Bomb where he works. Although, other nominated Memes may have more versatile applications, we chose it because it is widely acknowledged as perfectly capturing the collective mood of so many in 2017.
This videoof work from home dad Brian Kelly being interviewed on BBC is a great case study of how reactions toward a viral video can change very quickly once it starts to circulate online. This video was originally well received by people who found the timing of the situation to be hilarious, but was met with criticism by others who took exception to Kelly’s reaction. We think it is pretty hilarious!
Top YouTube Live Feed: April the Giraffe
For all the horrific events that took place in 2017, everybody loves a good news story and April the Giraffe fit the bill. The resident of Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, New York shot to worldwide stardom after her pregnancy was streamed live over the internet. The replay of her giving birth – which occurred in April – has garnered more than 15 million views on YouTube.
Best Instagram Follow: @passengershaming
This account is interesting, as the content is crowdsourced and attempts to serve up social justice as only the Internet can. Passengers and crew contribute actual photos of people pushing the barriers of travel etiquette, while we sit back and take notes of what one should never do on a plane.
Best Netflix Show of 2017: Stranger Things- Season 2
Stranger Things Season Two- Netflix/YouTube
Was there a more anticipated show than Season 2 of Stanger Things coming into 2017? The Netflix juggernaut did not disappoint as more than 15 million people watched it in the first 3 days following release. To put that into context, that eclipses the season 8 premiere of the Walking Dead, which also happened to be the show’s 100th episode.
Overall, Netflix had another banner year. By the third quarter of 2017, Netflix had over 109 million subscribers worldwide which means that “Netflix and Chill” will still be a thing for the foreseeable future. With other original top-rated shows such as Ozark, Orange is the New Black and Narcos, there is no question that Netflix’s gamble to bet the farm on original content seems to be paying off.
2017 was a great comeback year for Nintendo. Released in March, the Nintendo Switch was by far the hottest console in 2017 and the Nintendo hits keep on coming with the recent release of Super Mario Odyssey. With over 209,000 console units sold in Canada alone this year, Nintendo shares soared up to $40 this year from $20 last year, making investor portfolios dothis.
Spotify rocked 2017. The average listener sampled roughly 40 differentartists per week, up from under 30 in 2014, evidence that listeners seem to be exploring a diverse mix of artists on the platform. As of June, Spotify had 140 millionactive users, up 40 million from last year. The most streamedsong in 2017: Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You.”.
Top Internet-related Political Story: Fake News
Although Trump’s Twitter feed was a continuous source of attention, we felt the biggest online political story was the ongoing issue of how we consume news on Social Media. This is a very complex issue that can impact our ability to get trustworthy information and have a meaningful exchange of ideas.
When these issues started bubbling up following the 2016 US election, big players in Silicon Valley were called out publicly to answer questions about how their platforms enabled this to happen. In response, Facebook released new guidelines for publisherson how to fight back against Fake News, while Google banned websitesthat promote these types of poorly sourced stories through their advertising platform. This also created an opportunity for innovative solutions like @probabot from Quartz which is a bot specifically designed to spot and identify political tweets originating from other bots.
This is a story which will certainly continue to evolve in 2018.
Top Online Social Movement: #MeToo
Following the emergence of the Harvey Weinstein scandal and 10 years after Tarana Burke created the “Me Too” movement, Alyssa Milano encouraged survivors of sexual assault and harassment to reply #MeToo to her tweetthis past October.
Since then, many others from the entertainment industry and from all walks of life have spoken out. As a result we have seen public figures such as Louis CK, Kevin Spacey and Matt Lauer publicly disgraced or forced to resign. The announcements and scandals have sparked an important conversation online and the list of those accused seems to grow longer day by day. TIME even named their “Person of the Year” as “The Silence Breakers” – a tribute to all those who have rallied against the sexual harassment they faced.
We thoroughly enjoyed putting this 2017 retrospective together for you and would like to thank all our customers and fans for another great year.
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