Social networks are more focused on creation and sharing content than in finding it. They also tend to highlight Web-centric communities. The debate over the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP (Intellectual Property) Act also made this year's list, as Twitter was an important center of that debate.
Users interested in getting an analysis of their own year on Twitter can do so via the company’s Your year on Twitter tool, which ships data from individual accounts to the personal Web site company Vizify. Once there, signed-in users can see a pattern of their own tweets throughout the year and track which of their messages were the most popular.
This year's top conversations closely mirrors the lists released by Twitter, Bing and Yahoo. The Summer Olympics generated 150 million Tweets, spiking with 116,000 tweets per minute during the closing ceremonies. Usain Bolt gained the distinction of being the games’ most-discussed athlete.
The U.S. election produced more than 31 million tweets on Election Day, and 10 million during the first presidential debate alone. The MTV Video Music Awards, Super Bowl, Euro 2012, Hurricane Sandy, UEFA Champions League Semi-Final and the death of Whitney Houston were also trending subjects.