NEW YORK — What do a former U.S. president, LeBron James and a guy who really, really likes chicken nuggets have in common? They made the biggest splash on Twitter this year.
Twitter on Tuesday released its top trending people and topics for 2017, ranging from sports to politics to Korean boy bands. It was a year in which almost every sector of society was mashed together or clashing on social media, with the “Tweeter in Chief,” President Donald Trump, leading the way.
Half of the top 10 tweets reveal a year marked by tragedy and sorrow, from a Houston submerged in water, to a concert in Manchester, England, where a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children.
Others, including the most shared tweet of the year, expose social media’s other-side-of-the-looking-glass panorama.
It came from fast food lover Carter Wilkerson, who, on a quest for a year’s worth of free chicken nuggets, pleaded with the world to retweet: “HELP ME PLEASE. A MAN NEEDS HIS NUGGS.” He fell short of the 18-million retweet bar set by Wendy’s, the purveyor of Wikerson’s obsession, but the fast-food chain gave Wilkerson his nuggets anyway for the effort.
President Barack Obama, with 1.7 million retweets in August, was second, posting, “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion…” It is a quote from Nelson Mandela.
Obama took three of the top 10 spots on the list.
The blasting by Cleveland Cavaliers star Lebron James of President Donald Trump rocketed around the world after he “rescinded” Stephen Curry’s invitation to the White House to celebrate the Golden State Warrior’s NBA championship.
Curry, like other prominent players on the team, said that he didn’t want to visit Trump in the White House.
While he did not make the most retweeted list, Trump took the top spot for the most tweeted about an elected world leader. He also came in No. 1 for top tweeted U.S. elected officials, with Vice President Mike Pence and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan taking second and third. PBS’ special live coverage of Trump’s inauguration day was the most viewed live stream broadcast of the year.
With the media in Trump’s crosshairs, it was also in the sights of Twitter users. The top three tweeted news outlets were Fox News, CNN and The New York Times.
Some other highlights: #halamadrid was the top sports hashtag, NFL was the top sports handle and the most tweeted musicians was for the Korean boy band BTS, also known as the Bangtan Boys.
Of course, the political atmosphere in America, activism and hashtags ruled Twitter, with #Resist the most used. That was followed by #MAGA, #ImpeachTrump, #TrumpTrain, “WomensMarch and #NotMyPresident.