What were the top trending shows in 2012? Some of the answers, as supplied by Google, may surprise you.
While Nielsen ratings can certainly give a general overview of a show's popularity throughout the year (despite the fact that the measurement system is outdated, according to journalists and industry insiders alike) in our increasingly tech-savvy world, it's online relevance that really determines a show's cultural cachet.
But while trending on the world's most well-known search engine is an impressive feat, topping Google's list isn't a guarantee of ratings dominance -- on the contrary, two of the shows that made the Top 10 were cancelled this year.
Check out the full list of the Top 10 Trending TV Shows of 2012 below.
1. "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo"
2. "The Voice"
3. "American Idol"
4. "Big Brother 14"
5. "X Factor"
6. "666 Park Avenue"
8. "Dance Moms"
9. "The New Normal"
10. "Switched At Birth"
It's no surprise that reality competitions such as "The Voice," "Big Brother" and "X Factor" (which often involve fans searching for elimination results post-episode) scored so highly, and given the public's morbid fascination with TLC's "Honey Boo Boo," she was sure to be a fixture. The more interesting additions appear further down the list.
"666 Park Avenue" and "Alcatraz" were both cancelled during their first seasons, while "The New Normal," which focuses on a gay couple who choose to have a baby through a surrogate, received plenty of controversy courtesy of One Million Moms and their reactions to its progressive subject matter. ABC Family's "Switched at Birth" was the network's highest rated premiere to date, dealing with two girls who were accidentally switched at the hospital and grew up with the wrong parents. The show has already garnered praise for its realistic and nuanced examination of disability and race. Though there are many reasons why TV fans might flock to the web to learn more about a show, the list gives an interesting insight into what got audiences buzzing in 2012.
Do you watch any of the shows listed on Google's trending list?