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Berlusconi, pope, Lampedusa top 2013 Twitter charts in Italy

Cucchi prison death most tweeted news topic

12 December, 15:47
Berlusconi, pope, Lampedusa top 2013 Twitter charts in Italy (ANSA) - Rome, December 12 - Three-time premier Silvio Berlusconi, Pope Francis, and a shipwreck that left hundreds of immigrants dead off the coast of Sicily were among the highest trending topics on Twitter in Italy in 2013. The microblogging platform divided its tally into several categories.

In politics, Berlusconi was bested only by his successor Mario Monti, a technocrat whose government was toppled when Berlusconi's center right pulled its support at the end of 2012.

In current events, the case of Stefano Cucchi received the most tweets after doctors and a hospital staffer were convicted in June of his 2009 death by starvation in police custody. Critics were outraged that the guilty were granted parole, and the twittersphere lit up when three police guards and three nurses who were also on trial were acquitted. Following behind in current events was the disaster off the Sicilian island of Lampedusa, which claimed around 400 lives of African immigrants when their ships crossing the Mediterranean caught sank. Further down was the stunning abdication of Pope Francis in February and the election of his successor Francis in March. In sport, the Champions League final between Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich topped the list, followed by Dutch winger Arjen Robben, who played a decisive role in Bayern's 3-0 victory. In television, tweets linked to MTV's vote for the Hottest Summer Superstar beat out Italy's version of the amateur music competition X Factor. The so-called "Tweet of Gold" prize for the most retweeted post in Italy went to Lea Michele (@msleamichele), star of the hit television series Glee, when she announced her breakup with series co-star Cory Monteith. Other noteworthy twitter trends in 2013 were Berlusconi's numerous legal entanglements - most notably his conviction for tax fraud and an case into allegations he paid an underage prostitute named Ruby for sex and abused his office in a lie to cover it up - as well as Astronaut Luca Parmitano becoming the first Italian to perform a spacewalk, Francis' visit to Brazil, and protests in Egypt and Turkey.