What's Trending

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What's Trending
What's Trending logo.png
Created byShira Lazar
Developed byDisrupt/Group
StarringShira Lazar
Theme music composerMike Relm
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
Executive producer(s)Damon Berger, Shira Lazar
Original releaseMay 15, 2011 –
External links
What's Trending title card in 2012

What's Trending is daily, live, interactive television show hosted by Shira Lazar that appears on YouTube covering the trending videos and personalities on YouTube.

Production history[edit]

Features and projects[edit]

The show consists of a daily Trending Now top 5 video countdown that showcases the biggest viral videos of the day on YouTube. Throughout the week, different segments feature musical performances, packages featuring curated lists of videos on YouTube, and interviews with high-profile celebrities and YouTube talent. Guests have included will.i.am, Larry King, Mark Cuban, Lisa Kudrow, Stan Lee, Kevin Smith, Jason Mewes, Burnie Burns, Drew Carey, iJustine, Spoken Reasons, Cimorelli, Kendrick Lamar, Talib Kweli, Big Sean, Jenna Marbles, Tony Hsieh, Dustin Lance Black, Jon Landeau, The Gregory Brothers, Antoine Dodson, Incubus, George Takei, Orlando Jones, Riff Raff, Skylar Grey, Danny Trejo, Felicia Day, Paul Scheer, Gilbert Gottfried, Cody Simpson, Snoop Dogg, Jon M. Chu, T.J. Miller, John Cena, Shaquille O'Neal, Billy Corgan, Robert Rodriguez, Common, Chris Hardwick, Margaret Cho, Eve, Russell Simmons, Bobak Ferdowsi, Adam DeVine, Anders Holm, Blake Anderson, Dominic Monaghan, Pentatonix, Romany Malco, Mia Rose, Chelsea Kane and Greg Grunberg.[citation needed]

What's Trending has worked in conjunction with MTV's O Music Awards as well as the American non-profit organization The Trevor Project to stream their yearly event. Actor Daniel Radcliffe participated in a live chat on the show discussing The Trevor Project.[1]

What's Trending has conducted interviews with Arnold Schwarzenegger, while promoting his autobiography, Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story,[2] and was one of the first news outlets to interview Bobak Ferdowsi after the successful launch of the Curiosity rover.[3]

In December 2012, What's Trending participated in the first "Tube-A-Tweet-A-Thon".[4] People would go to Twitter and tweet using the hashtag #Tubeathon and $1 would be donated to Covenant House to try and raise $50,000 to serve homeless youth.

On June 17, 2013, Bedrocket Media Ventures made a seven figure investment in the series.[5]

In June 2017, Sinclair Broadcasting Group announced a partnership with Lazar and What's Trending to create a new show, "Circa Pop Live with Shira Lazar" that will appear on Circa News' website and Facebook page.[6] In August of that same year Comcast announced a partnership that would have a new segment, "What's Watchable," produced by Lazar, to be shown in between episodes of Comcast's streaming service, Watchable.[7]

In December of 2018, What's Trending announced a partnership with Gas Station TV, where viewers can see reports nationwide across their 18,000 locations.[8]

Lupe Fiasco controversy[edit]

On June 7, rapper/producer Lupe Fiasco was interviewed during the program and said, "My fight against terrorism, to me, the biggest terrorist is Obama in the United States of America."[9] On June 20, Lupe Fiasco appeared on the Fox News show The O'Reilly Factor defending his comments.[10]

Departure from CBS News[edit]

On September 10, 2011 CBS News ended its relationship with Lazar and the show after a tweet was posted by a junior staffer claiming Apple co-founder Steve Jobs had died. A formal apology was issued live at the beginning of the September 13 show,[11] Now the show carries on independently through partnerships with Ustream and Livestream. Marc Hustvedt of Tubefilter wrote, "The show itself is still groundbreaking, and arguably the most polished half-hour live show on the internet right now. It brings intelligent people together to talk about top news stories in an informative way."[12]

In mid-2012, the show rebranded itself and became a daily show covering the most popular videos on YouTube.[13]

In 2014, HLN announced a development deal with What's Trending.[14] Also in 2014, Marriott announces What's Trending as part of their development studio slate.[15] As part of that partnership, Marriott celebrated its Millionth Mobile check-in with Lazar and Jeana Smith, founder of Prank vs Prank.[16] Marriott would later announced a new series, in partnership with What's Trending, titled Experiences.[17]

What's Trending partnered with Samsung to provide live coverage from the Consumer Electronics Show in January 2015,[18] as well as South by Southwest in March.[19]

Also in 2015, What's Trending announced a new COO in James Haffner, who most recently acted as an executive producer for DeFranco Creative.[20]


Critical reception[edit]

Steve Rosenbaum of Huffington Post wrote, "It's clear that CBS is committed to this story -- jumping past the cheesy bluescreen or robo-set and building Lazar and her team a truly 'webified' set that is both high tech and modern. When the network springs for a set, you know they're in it for the long run."[21] Mike Hale of The New York Times wrote, "What's really new about "What's Trending," and most of interest to Watchlist, is simply the fact that it's a live, scheduled half-hour Web show being done on the site of a major broadcast television network (and with a major corporate sponsor AT&T). That's revolutionary, whether the subject is social networking or retirement planning."[22] Marshall Kirkpatrick of Read Write Web wrote, "It will all be run through the living experiment of multi-platform viewer engagement that What's Trending is using and building at the same time. It's an effort that could help illuminate some developments in the future of entertainment on the web and it's ambitious enough to be downright inspirational."[23]

Awards and nominations[edit]

In July 2012, What's Trending received nominations for the Primetime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Achievement in Original Interactive Programming.[24][25]

The show also received two 2012 Webby Award Nominations for Best Host and Best Variety Show.[26] On January 12, the IAWTV held their award show in Las Vegas, in conjunction with the Consumer Electronics Show. There, What's Trending received four awards: Best Directing (Non-Fiction) - Brett Register, Best Host (Live) - Shira Lazar, Best Interactive/Social Media Experience and Best Hosted Live Web Series.[27]

In February 2013, What's Trending won a Streamy Award for Best Live Series.[28]

In 2015, the International Academy of Web Television announced Lazar as a nominee for Best Live Host.[29]


  1. ^ Daniel Radcliffe Talks Suicide Prevention in the Trevor Project's First Google+ Live Chat, Retrieved September 17, 2012.
  2. ^ Arnold Schwarzenegger Reveals All in Google+ Hangout Hosted by Shira Lazar, Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  3. ^ Meet NASA's Mohawk Guy, Bobak Ferdowsi, Retrieved August 6, 2012.
  4. ^ The 1st Annual Tube-A-Tweet-A-Thon Holiday Spectacular Archived 2012-12-11 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved December 6, 2012.
  5. ^ Shaw, Lucas (June 18, 2013). "'What’s Trending' Scores Major Investment From Bedrocket Media Ventures". TheWrap. Retrieved July 12, 2013.
  6. ^ Shira Lazar’s What’s Trending Teams With Sinclair’s Circa On News And Pop Culture Series, Retrieved June 23, 2017
  7. ^ Comcast’s Watchable Taps Shira Lazar’s “What’s Trending” for New Interstitial Series — “What’s…, Retrieved August 17, 2017
  8. ^ Digital-first publishers have fallen in love with Gas Station TV, Retrieved December 14, 2018
  9. ^ "Obama A Terrorist? Lupe Fiasco on Politics and Music". CBS News.[dead link] Retrieved June 7, 2011
  10. ^ "Bill O'Reilly Confronts Rapper Lupe Fiasco Over Calling Obama a 'Terrorist'", The O'Reilly Factor. Fox News. June 20, 2011
  11. ^ "What's Trending - Episode 18 - 9/13/11". YouTube. Retrieved December 15, 2014.
  12. ^ Hustvedt, Marc (September 13, 2011). "What's Trending Forges on After Split from CBS". Tubefilter.
  13. ^ Krewson, Chris (August 20, 2012). "Web Show What's Trending Goes Daily". The Hollywood Reporter.
  14. ^ HLN Announces Nightly News Program, Social Media-Centric Development Slate, Retrieved April 10, 2014
  15. ^ Marriott Launches Global Creative and Content Marketing Studio, Retrieved September 29, 2014
  16. ^ [1] Archived 2015-04-04 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved April 2, 2015
  17. ^ What’s Trending Checks YouTube Stars Into Marriott With ‘Experiences’ Series, Retrieved, February 6, 2015
  18. ^ What’s Trending, Samsung Partner For Live Stream Of CES Events Retrieved January 5, 2015
  19. ^ SXSW 2015: “What’s Trending” Streams Live from the Samsung Lounge Archived 2015-03-24 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved March 18, 2015
  20. ^ What's Trending Expands With Veteran Digital Executive, Retrieved February 9, 2015
  21. ^ Rosenbaum, Steve (June 20, 2011). "CBS Joins the Curation Trend". The Huffington Post.
  22. ^ Hale, Mike (May 24, 2011). "Watchlist: A Self-Conscious Web Experiment From CBS News". The New York Times.
  23. ^ Kirkpatrick, Marshall (October 27, 2011). "The Incredible Engagement Feedback Loops of Startup Loving TV Host Shira Lazar". ReadWrite.
  24. ^ "What's Trending With Shira Lazar". Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. Retrieved December 15, 2014.
  25. ^ Yeung, Ken (July 19, 2012). "'What's Trending' Gets Its First Primetime Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Interactive TV Program" Archived 2012-10-14 at the Wayback Machine. bub.blicio.us.
  26. ^ (dead link). Webby Awards Archived April 25, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  27. ^ Marlowe, Chris (January 13, 2012). "IAWTV Awards Names Winners". Digital Media Wire.
  28. ^ "3rd Annual Nominees & Winners". Streamy Awards. 2013. Retrieved December 15, 2014.
  29. ^ 2015 IAWTV Award Nominees, Retrieved 2015