Occupy: Online buzzword of the year

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The word “occupy”, the phrase “Arab Spring” and the name “Steve Jobs” have been most-talked about terms in the English language blogosphere and online media this year, an Internet monitoring report says.

Other trends mentioned by the online tracking company, Global Language Monitor, also reflect the ongoing worldwide social turbulence. The words “deficit”, “drone” and (the other) “99%”, the phrases “anger and rage”, “the Great Recession” and “Tahrir Square” made it to the Top 10.

Among the names that made the Internet buzz in 2011 are Osama bin Laden (the now-dead Islamic militant leader) Fukushima (the disaster-hit Japanese nuclear plant), Muammar Gaddafi (the defunct Libyan leader), Mohamed Bouaizizi (the Tunisian street vendor whose self-immolation triggered the Arab Spring), and PIIGS (the acronym for the lame ducks of the eurozone, whose struggles threaten to submerge the EU).

President Obama attracted less public interest this year than the Chinese leader, Hu Jintao. The tragic air accident that killed the Russian Yaroslavl Lokomotiv ice hockey team put the squad’s name on the list too.

“Our selections this year to a large extent reflect the ongoing political and economic uncertainty that seems to be affecting much of the developed world,” said Paul JJ Payack, president of the Global Language Monitor, who also cited China’s continued rise an exception to the gloomy pattern.

On a brighter note, the online community was interested in the royal wedding which spliced Kate Middleton and the British heir apparent Prince William, and the “bunga bunga” parties hosted by the Italy’s erstwhile  Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.