- Elisa Donovan - A woman who is the subject of a Lifetime movie which will be airing on Saturday (check times and local listings near you). The Google Need To Know Now Ranking (the GNTKNR): 3.
- Life on Mars - an ABC show about a guy (I think he's a cop) who is transported back to 1972. I've actually heard it's kind of good, but I didn't see it. GNTKNR: 8
- Rachel Yamagata - a musician/songwriter of some sort who was on Leno. GNTKNR: 9
- The Office - Business Ethics - General topic/plot of The Office. GNTKNR: 13
- Gary Dourdan - Apparently, some guy on CSI: Any Town Near You who is leaving the show. GNTKNR: 14
- Moral Orel - A stop motion animated television show which gets a TV-MA rating due to sexual references and dark, satirical humor (Yay! Dark, satirical humor!) GNTKNR: 17
- Testees - A show on F/X about people who are test subjects (ie, guinea pigs) for various, usually not recommended, products at a testing facility. GNTKNR: 19
- Smallville Season 8 - Apparently, there were previews out at some point today. GNTKNR: 20.
And those are just the Top 20 of the Top 100 Google Hot Trends. That's 10 out of 20. So HALF of the Top 20 Hot Trends are because people saw the particular item on TV and then took the time to Google it. Wow. See, I don't really think of TV as something that people really think all that much about when they're watching it. I also don't think of a lot of things that are ON TV as something that I would really want to (or be able to) think about. At least not enough to then think, "That ricin stuff. I must know more!" That's just not going to happen. With me. With me that's not going to happen. With a heck of a lot of other people it is going to happen and it does happen. I just wish I knew why.
This is starting to perplex me more as I think about it more. Seriously. People are SO interested about what they see in their fictional TV shows that they need to get online and learn more about stuff, yet this country is packed to the gills with morons. They're EVERYWHERE. Moron here. Moron there. Everywhere you go. You can't swing a dead cat without hitting a moron. (Well, if you're swinging around a dead cat, you ARE a moron, so perhaps that wasn't the best example I could give there.) That just doesn't make any sense. We should be a country of geniuses if we're so intrigued by learning things that we just happen to hear or watch for half an hour (22 minutes minus the commercials). But we're not. Oh, no. We are NOT geniuses.
30% of the country thinks that we are currently, right now, this very moment, IN a Depression. They are clearly morons. But do they know anything about ricin, that's my question! If they do, why are they looking up stuff that they saw on 'ER' and not stuff about how the economy works and what would quantify a Depression? (Hint: If you're not wearing a barrel, it's not a Depression.) I know fictional lands are a great place to visit once in a while, but why are so many people hanging out there with their fake hospital and their fake doctors and their fake ricin? Why aren't these people channeling that curiosity for good instead of evil?
Let's review. What have we learned? Not much, unfortunately. We've reinforced the idea that people in the US love their TV and everything on it. We've gleaned information that suggests that people don't always understand what they see on TV OR they do understand it, but they just want to know more about it and they remedy both of those situations by getting online and using Google to search for what they want to know. We still have no idea why there are so many morons, though we did learn that you probably don't want to be swinging around dead cats. We learned we're not in a Depression, despite what 30% of people in the US think. And I also think we learned that, of those 10 things out of the Top 20 that people had to know more about, NONE of them provokes any sort of interest in me to want to follow in the footsteps of those curious viewers and learn more via Google. I just don't. But I am the only one, apparently, as lots of people are using their new found thirst for knowledge, via their TV, as an excuse to screw around online. Me, I just don't make excuses.
So what we need to do is to hope that TV shows will do show topics about things that are actually occurring in the country (apparently things on Saturday Night Live do not count, as they were on TV and they didn't make the Top 20) so that people can Google them and learn about stuff that really might matter. And if they could start with something about how we're not in a Depression (and throw in something about how Barry isn't a Muslim while you're at it) it would be most appreciated.