5G towers burned for “causing COVID symptoms”

As a conspiracy theory spread that it was 5G that was causing COVID-19, arsonists set fire to dozens of 5G cell towers in the UK, leading the WHO to publicly “mythbust” the idea.

Business Insider, WHO

Toilet paper became more precious than gold

As lockdowns came into force around the world, the global population knew exactly what they needed to do. Yes, that’s right, invest in toilet paper!

Sources worldwide

Zoom stopped businesspeople caring about pants

With the shift to remote working, businesspeople relying on Zoom cared a lot less about the half you don’t see on camera, resulting in plummeting sales of pants (trousers).

CNN

Disney+ enjoyed lockdown bonanza in Europe

With perfect timing, Disney+ launched in Europe just in time to help parents “homeschool” their children. Within a month it was responsible for 7 Exabytes of additional data on mobile networks.

Economic Times

Video games officially became good for you

12 months after adding ‘gaming disorder’ to its list of addictive behaviors, the World Health Organization officially recommended video games to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

Business Insider

Facemasks led to global slump in lipstick sales

When people can’t see your lips, what’s the point of lipstick? That’s what millions of lipstick-wearers asked themselves, as sales dropped 11%. Meanwhile, eye makeup – in particular, mascara - is booming.

Business Insider

Mobile industry denied annual pilgrimage

100,000+ mobile industry execs worldwide were left with an MWC-shaped hole in their lives this year. Love it or hate it, this was the first cancellation in 33 years, since the ‘GSM World Congress’ was first held in 1987.

GSMA

Businesspeople waved goodbye to the handshake

The 2,500-year old practice of greeting people by shaking hands was virtually wiped out by the virus. The new contenders are head nods, waves and the still-weird elbow bumps.

Wall Street Journal

Monkeys stole COVID blood samples and took them up a tree

In the category of “you couldn’t make it up”, monkeys broke into a research lab in India and made off with positive COVID blood samples. Video emerged of a monkey with the samples up a nearby tree.

Reuters

Bicycles crossed off the Christmas list this year

With gyms closed, people were forced to exercise at home. Consumers turned to pedal power as worldwide demand for bicycles surged 650%, leading to a global shortage of bicycles for Christmas.

BBC

Lockdowns got us watching TV for 6.5 hours a day

During lockdowns, adults spent 6.5 hours on average watching TV and online video each day, with a 71% surge in video streaming viewing compared to 2019. Meanwhile 15 million new subscribers signed up to Netflix in April, May & June.

BBC

And we learnt LOTS of new words in this “unprecedented year”!

The dictionaries of the world were hastily updated to reflect “the new normal” language we have suddenly grown accustomed to!

VARIOUS SOURCES