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The Week in Online Trends

The beginning of the week ushered in light-hearted fare with online conversations being driven by entertainment news surrounding the Billboard Music Awards and Johnny Depp’s divorce announcement. But as we headed into the holiday weekend, the news of the killing of a Cincinnati Zoo gorilla drove heated debate and made it a top trending item to close out the week.

Read on to find out what top trending topics Taykey detected last week from our analysis of millions of data points from conversations across the web.

To drill down on the details of age, gender, sentiment, and conversation volume, click on the related trend thumbnail image. To get a sense of what’s trending right now for audiences, check out our new Trend Pulse tool.

 
 
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Billboard Music Awards 2016 Billboard Music Awards (Peaked on 5/23)
The May 22nd show, featuring a Madonna tribute to Prince, drove several trends the next day as online conversation spiked around a number of awards-related topics. Madonna singing a rendition of Prince’s “Nothing Compares 2 U” while atop a purple throne garnered a lot of online attention, as did Céline Dion for the Icon Award. Dion’s emotional acceptance speech, which was dedicated to her recently deceased husband, trended the following day especially among females who expressed positive sentiment for the singer. Other Billboard trends focused on the topic of who won awards and on red carpet appearances by the likes of Britney Spears, The Weekend, and Fifth Harmony.

 
 

Chewbacca Mom Woman in Chewbacca Mask Video Goes Viral (Peaked on 5/23)
Candace Payne laughing hysterically while donning her newly purchased Chewbacca mask has become a viral sensation with over 130 million views since its upload on May 19th. Good luck finding your own Chewbacca mask as it is now completely sold out online as a result of this hugely popular video. Interest was split evenly across age groups and along gender lines, while sentiment for the topic Star Wars was (not surprisingly) positive.

 
 

NFL Super Bowls Cities NFL Announces Upcoming Super Bowls Cities (Peaked on 5/25)
On May 24th, the NFL announced their new Super Bowl cities for 2019 to 2021 – Atlanta, South Florida, and Los Angeles. There was some controversy earlier in the year with a potential Atlanta pick as the NFL indicated the Atlanta bid could be jeopardized over Georgia legislation restricting LGBT rights, which was later vetoed by the Governor in March. This topic was trending among male sports enthusiasts.

 
 

Amber Heard Amber Heard and Johnny Depp Headed For Divorce (Peaked on 5/26)
News of Amber Heard filing for divorce from Johnny Depp broke on May 25th and has since sparked a flurry of online conversation about the split. Citing irreconcilable differences, Heard filed for divorce a mere three days after Depp’s mother passed away. The couple, who were married for 15 months, was last seen together in April in an awkward apology video for smuggling their dogs into Australia. The topic was driven mostly by women, ages 45 to 64. And in terms of sentiment, Amber Heard fared pretty negatively.

 
 

Cincinnati Zoo Gorilla Cincinnati Zoo Kills Gorilla After Toddler Falls Into Its Enclosure (Peaked on 5/29)
With the Memorial Day weekend in full swing, social chatter lit up around news of a gorilla being shot and killed at the Cincinnati Zoo after a 4-year old boy fell into a moat within the exhibit. The Zoo made the decision to kill the 17-year old male gorilla after he grabbed and dragged the young boy around the enclosure. Heated debates about who was at fault and whether it was necessary to kill the animal made this one of last week’s top trending topics. Moms, ages 35-54, were the driving force behind this trend.