By REBECCA LATTANZIO
We recently had a discussion in class about Google Trends, a service that allows you to search the Web for popular topics and read in great detail about them. This got me thinking, do other sites carry this same tool? I’m sure most of you know that Twitter was probably the innovator in bringing the “trendy topic” to mainstream America. Other sites seem to be catching on quick realizing that searches on any given day can actually quite concentrated to certain topics of discussion. This week all that was on anyone’s mind was the start of the NFL season, the VMAs and Oprah’s television show. Most websites today even have a “most searched” or “trending” list at the top of their page so readers can know whats hot without even having to move a finger.
While Yahoo has yet to come out with a Google Trends equivalent they have jumped into the trend… well trend. The top right corner of the Yahoo home page now includes a “Trending Now” list of 10 topics. As I look at it today, I see the likes of Nicki Minaj, tax law, and Cher.
When you click on one of the topic names, it takes you to a list of latest news about that topic. Songs of Nicki’s appear first when I click on her link followed by articles about Ms. Minaj and then website entries about her. You can also look at pictures, videos, and even recent tweets about Nicki! The trending topics list constantly stays on the left side of your screen so if you get bored you can simply click something else that people are buzzing about. The list changes very very rapidly.
In a matter of minutes, Nicki Minaj was bumped off the list I was viewing completely and replaced with Cedar Point. Yahoo even allows you to refine your search by looking for news about a topic that has appeared in the past hour, past day, and past week so you can always stay current. I think these tools are becoming more and more useful since journalism is all about immediacy and timeliness after all!