In this highly unusual year, it might be hard to imagine what – or who – stood out the most.
And so on Thursday, Time magazine’s task to announce their annual “Person of the Year” award may prove difficult.
The “person of the year” – previously ‘man’ or ‘woman’ of the year – is a famous yearly issue of the magazine that features a person, group, or idea that, "most affected the news and our lives, for good or ill, and embodied what was important about the year, for better or for worse".
There is also a Time reader poll, that supposedly has no effect on the selection made by editors. This year readers voted for: “Essential workers—the nurses, doctors, delivery people, grocery-store employees and many others who continue to risk their lives on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic”. (Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and an authoritative voice on Covid-19, came in second place).
As news that the magazine would be announcing the 2020 winner on Thursday spread across social media, many Twitter users were convinced the official outcome would be very similar to the reader poll, if not, the exact same.
“My guess is it's one of the following 3: 1. Nurses/healthcare workers, 2. Dr. Fauci, 3. David Cross,” another person said – throwing in a joke.
While some replies to the impending announcement were earnest and serious, many took the opportunity to make their own comic suggestions.
“If this doesn't go to the person who took the booking at the Four Seasons landscaping company then I want a recount,” one person joked, referencing the bizarre Trump campaign spectacle in a suburban car park.
Others were certain the winner had to be “sweatpants” – a newly-important fashion staple for all of us in lockdown.
In more recent years, winners included former president Barack Obama, the pope, President Donald Trump, and last year, climate activist Greta Thunberg. And despite Trump’s past claims he should win ‘every single year’, all shall be revealed soon.