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The Top 25 Web Searches of the Decade

Ten years in search - a look back at the top 25 Web searches


As 2009 draws to a close, it's time to take a look back at the first decade of the 00's and see what we, the Web community at large, searched for online. The results here are pulled from a handpicked variety of search engines and search lists, and represent the most searched for topics over the longest period of time.

Entertainment-related searches are prominent in this list, followed closely behind by social networking sites, politics, and sports. All of these searches appeared in at least two of the yearly end of the year search statistic compilations, and represent the sum total of millions of searches.

1. Facebook

This popular social networking site first came onto the Web scene in 2004, and focused primarily on students high school to college age. As it gained popularity, the site became more accessible, including not only students, but organizations and companies. People use Facebook to connect with friends, family, and work colleagues, create events, share photos, and more. It's one of the most highly trafficked sites on the entire Web.

More about Facebook

2. Baidu

Baidu, started in 2000, is the largest Chinese language search engine in China. More people use Baidu to search for content than any other site on the Chinese mainland.

More about Baidu

3. MySpace

MySpace, started in 2003, is one of the world's most popular social networking sites, with hundreds of millions of members. People use MySpace to connect with friends, listen to new music, watch videos, and much more.

More about MySpace

4. World Cup

The World Cup is an international men's soccer championship that happens every four years. Millions of soccer/football fans all over the world search for World Cup information on a variety of search engines and sites.

More about the World Cup

5. Wikipedia

Wikipedia has been around since 2001, and is a free encyclopedia of a staggering array of information. Anyone can edit Wikipedia; it is an open project that requires on the Web community to flourish.

More about Wikipedia

6. Britney Spears

Photo: John Parra/Getty
The pop star, who made her debut in 1998 with "Hit Me Baby One More Time", is a perennial favorite of many, many searchers: she showed up in the top searches nearly every year of the decade.

More about Britney Spears and related entertainers

7. Harry Potter

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling PRNewsFoto/SCHOLASTIC
The boy wizard has captured the hearts of millions of fans all over the world since the beginning of the saga in 1997.

More about Harry Potter

8. Shakira

Courtesy Epic Records
Latin American singing sensation Shakira has been on several yearly search lists. She is probably best known for her hit singles "Whenever Wherever" and "Hips Don't Lie", along with her best-selling Spanish language album, Fijacion Oral, vol. 1.

More about Shakira

9. Lord of the Rings

New Line Productions 2002
The Lord of the Rings trilogy: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King, were made into three movies that dominated movie Web searches this decade.

More about Lord of the Rings

10. Barack Obama

Photo: Mark Lyons/Getty Images
President Barack Obama made history by being the first African-American president in American history, and our Web searches reflected this pivotal moment.

More about Barack Obama

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