With 1 billion people worldwide watching the dramatic and emotional rescue of the 33 men trapped for 69 days underground in the north of Chile, it’s no surprise that media both traditional and high tech have felt the impact.
Stats released by Twitter on its Year In Review website place the Chilean miners at number five on the Top Trending News Topic list, meaning they received the fifth largest number of tweet mentions of any news story in 2010.
The term “Chile” was also at third place in Google’s list of most searched-for news topics of the year, a combination of the mine rescue and of the devastating earthquake that hit Chile on Feb. 27 this year (with “earthquake” the fourth-ranking term).
At the other end of the media continuum, Time magazine issued its hugely popular annual ‘Top 10s’ of the year – and featured the mine rescue in no less than three of its lists.
The miners were ranked at number three in both the Top 10 New Stories list and the Top 10 Pictures list, as well as being a Runner Up for Person of the Year, which was won this year by Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg.
Time wrote that “miraculous” survival and rescue of the thirty three men “inspired a world desperate for a happy ending to something, anything.”
Time goes on to ask: “Why did things turn out so blessedly different in Chile? A mother lode of luck and faith was involved. But the rescue also showcased a commodity even rarer today than the gold the miners were quarrying: leadership.”
Foreman Luis Urzúa, who rallied the men during the 69 days they were trapped 700 meters underground, told Time: “We made sure it was one for all and all for one down there. You have to convince them not just that they’re going to survive but why they have to survive — their families, their faith.”
This post is also available in Spanish