Israeli firm ranks 2017’s top fuelers of online comments: bitcoin, #MeToo, Trump
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Israeli firm ranks 2017’s top fuelers of online comments: bitcoin, #MeToo, Trump

The wedding of Prince Harry to US actress Meghan Markle in May will be a hit event of 2018, Spot.IM startup forecasts

Bitcoin (AFP Photo/Karen Bleier)
Bitcoin (AFP Photo/Karen Bleier)

Israeli startup Spot.IM, which manages the comments on some of the world’s largest news sites, has published a rating of the topics that generated the most reactions in the past year.

“The events that created most of the discussions on the internet changed the world in which we live and reshaped it,” said Nadav Shoval, CEO of Spot.IM. in a statement. “We made the rating by measuring the extent of the responses in articles published on Fox News, Forbes, Time, AOL, The Huffington Post and hundreds of content sites. ”

The bitcoin

The star of comments in 2017 is the bitcoin. In 2017, the digital currency made the transition from technology and financial niche to the mainstream media, and has become a mainstream of social dialogue. Talk about the bitcoin has increased the public’s exposure to other related concepts, such as blockchain, the technology at the base of the bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.  The internet comments that featured the hitcoin included heated debates with warnings of a “bubble,” surfers betting on the value of the currency, and boasts from bitcoin fans each time the currency broke another record.

The #MeToo campaign

Participants rally outside the Cable News Network’s Hollywood studios on Sunset Boulevard to take a stand against sexual assault and harassment for the #MeToo March in the Hollywood district of Los Angeles on November 12, 2017. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

The international campaign that broke out following the exposure of sexual harassment by Hollywood producer and director Harvey Weinstein created an unprecedented wave of online comments. Initially, the media reports attracted mostly angry reactions against the harassers, but soon the comments began to include accounts from women and men who shared previously unrevealed personal stories in the wave of awareness.

US President Donald Trump

US President Donald Trump exits Air Force One at Palm Beach International Airport in Palm Beach, Florida, on December 22, 2017. (AFP Photo/ Nicholas Kamm)

Donald Trump’s swearing-in ceremony as the 45th President of the US caused people around the world to respond with joy or anger at his entry into office, with the online comments reflecting the turmoil on the ground, as demonstrations flooded the US. In addition, Trump himself fueled internet storms with tweets at all hours of the day generating flurries of reactions.

Natural disasters

Houston residents making their way out of a flooded neighborhood after it was inundated with rainwater following Hurricane Harvey, Aug. 29, 2017. (Scott Olson/Getty Images via JTA)

 Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria caused storms and flood damage across large areas of the globe. This caused worried comments, starting with panic before the storm, through real-time reports documenting the damage and tales of rehabilitation in progress.

 The forecast for 2018: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding

Britain’s Prince Harry and his fiancée US actress Meghan Markle pose for a photograph in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace in west London on November 27, 2017, following the announcement of their engagement. (AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS)

An event that didn’t make it into this year’s ranking, but according to the initial number of responses seems set to become one of 2018’s hit events, is the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle scheduled for May 19, 2018. Since Markle is an American celebrity, the interest in the event is growing even outside the UK, crossing cultures and audiences. The fact that Markle is biracial is the subject of many of the comments, Spot.IM said.

Founded in 2012, Spot I.M enables digital media companies to create and manage their own social networks in a bid to boost site engagement.

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