The Most Surprising Twitter Trends of 2011

Twitter has revealed its top trending topics for 2011 — a list that always manages to surprise us on some level every year. With millions of voices chattering in one place, the breakdown provides a fascinating snapshot of popular culture — and yes, highlights plenty of trends we should probably feel embarrassed about wasting our precious 140 characters on. If you told us on New Year’s Day that some of these names, events, and subjects would have been the words at everyone’s fingertips, we’d have been shocked. What didn’t trend is equally curious, and we examine it all past the break. Ignore the insane ramblings of today’s “#nevertrustagirl” and “#YouKnowAFatPersonInvented” topics, and see what surprised us in this year in review. Leave your picks below.


Charlie Sheen (#1 Actor), #tigerblood (#2 Hashtag), and Two and a Half Men (#2 Television)

After Charlie Sheen’s noisy departure from CBS’s Two and a Half Men — a sitcom that made the actor the highest-paid star on television (around $1.8 million per episode) — and his disparaging remarks about producer Chuck Lorre, Sheen became an overnight sensation in the Twitterverse. His public meltdown — complete with #winning demented tweets about Adonis DNA and Twitter’s #2 trending hashtag of 2011, tiger blood — won him the honor of “Fastest Time to Reach 1 Million Followers” in the Guinness Book of World Records. Not bad for a guy you’d have pegged for an eventual semi-quiet retirement on the small screen?