Time 100

Last updated

Time 100
Awarded for"100 most influential people"
DateAnnually since 2004 (2004)
Presented by Time magazine
Website time100.time.com

Time 100 (often stylized as TIME 100) is an annual listicle of the 100 most influential people in the world, assembled by the American news magazine Time . First published in 1999 as the result of a debate among American academics, politicians, and journalists, the list is now a highly publicized annual event. Although appearing on the list is often seen as an honor, Time makes it clear that entrants are recognized for changing the world, regardless of the consequences of their actions. The final list of influential individuals is exclusively chosen by Time editors, with nominations coming from the Time 100 alumni and the magazine's international writing staff. [1] Only the winner of the Reader's Poll, conducted days before the official list is revealed, is chosen by the general public. [2] The corresponding commemorative gala is held annually in Manhattan.

In journalism and blogging, a listicle is a short-form of writing that uses a list as its thematic structure, but is fleshed out with sufficient copy to be published as an article. A typical listicle will prominently feature a cardinal number in its title, with subsequent subheadings within the text itself reflecting this schema. The word is a portmanteau derived from list and article. It has also been suggested that the word evokes "popsicle", emphasising the fun but "not too nutritious" nature of the listicle.

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe, which is 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the most populous city is New York City. Most of the country is located contiguously in North America between Canada and Mexico.

News magazine typed, printed, and published piece of paper, magazine or a radio or television program

A news magazine is a typed, printed, and published piece of paper, magazine or a radio or television program, usually published weekly, consisting of articles about current events. News magazines generally discuss stories, in greater depth than do newspapers or newscasts, and aim to give the consumer an understanding of the important events beyond the basic facts.




A focus of media coverage for the 2019 list centered on the authors chosen by Time to write the honorees' blurbs, including questions over Robert Downey Jr. being an inappropriate choice to write the blurb for Rami Malek [3] (though Downey had previously interviewed Malek at the start of his success [4] ), and why Samuel L. Jackson didn't contribute a blurb. [3]

Robert Downey Jr. American actor

Robert John Downey Jr. is an American actor, producer and singer. His career has been characterized by critical and popular notoriety in his youth, followed by a period of substance abuse and legal troubles, before a resumption of critical repute and resurgence of commercial success in middle age. In 2008, Downey was named by Time magazine among the 100 most influential people in the world, and from 2013 to 2015, he was listed by Forbes as Hollywood's single highest-paid actor. His films have grossed over $5.8 billion in North America and $14.4 billion internationally, making him the second-highest-grossing box-office actor to date both domestically and worldwide.

Rami Malek American actor

Rami Said Malek is an American actor and producer. His breakthrough role was as computer hacker Elliot Alderson in the USA Network television series Mr. Robot (2015–present), for which he received several accolades, including the 2016 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series. In 2018, he portrayed Freddie Mercury in the biopic Bohemian Rhapsody, for which he received critical acclaim and won several awards, including the Academy Award, Golden Globe Award, Screen Actors Guild Award, and British Academy Film Award for Best Actor. He is the first actor of Egyptian heritage to win the Academy Award for Best Actor. Time magazine named Malek one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2019.

Samuel L. Jackson American actor and film producer

Samuel Leroy Jackson is an American actor and film producer. A recipient of critical acclaim and numerous accolades and awards, Jackson is the actor whose films have made the highest total gross revenue.


British actress Millie Bobby Brown was added to the list aged 14, becoming the youngest recipient of the honor. [5]

Millie Bobby Brown British actress

Millie Bobby Brown is an English actress. She rose to prominence for her role as Eleven in the Netflix science fiction horror series Stranger Things, for which she received Primetime Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series. At age 13, she became one of the youngest nominees in Emmy history. Her film debut came in 2019 with the monster film Godzilla: King of the Monsters.



The official list of 100 most influential people was revealed on April 24, 2014 featuring Beyoncé on the US cover and Robert Redford, Jason Collins, and Mary Barra on its international covers. [6] Forty-one women are included in the edition, the highest number of female personalities in the list's history. [7] The annual gala was held on April 29, 2014 in New York City.

Managing editor of Time, Nancy Gibbs says of the year's list:



The original online sources refer to the list with the following quote: "Meet the most influential people in the world. They are artists and activist s, reformers and researchers, heads of state, and captains of industry. Their ideas spark dialogue and dissent and sometimes even revolution. Welcome to this year's Time 100." [9] [10] The announcement was celebrated with a black-tie event in New York City on April 26, 2011. [11] The honorees were joined by A-list celebrities at Frederick P. Rose Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center for the event. Time readers contributed to the selection by an online vote of over 200 finalists. [12]

The list included familiar global newsmakers such as U.S. President Barack Obama, and Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel as well as what the media describes as "newcomers" to the global press. [13] The list included numerous figures representing the year of upheaval in the Middle East ranging from rebels, to political leaders to news correspondents. Although the events of what has been dubbed the Arab Spring were prominent, media figures unrelated to those events also figured in the list as well. [14] Additionally, Prince William of Wales and Kate Middleton were part of the list during the week before their wedding. [15] The list also included Katsunobu Sakurai, mayor of Minamisōma, Fukushima, which was the city most affected by the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. [13]


In its online presentation, Time introduced the list as follows: "In our annual Time 100 issue, we name the people who most affect our world". [16] The overall list was organized with 4 main sub-lists: Leaders, featuring Sarah Palin and Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva; Artists, featuring Conan O'Brien and Lady Gaga; and Thinkers, featuring Steve Jobs and Zaha Hadid. [16] The list included 10 Indians, [17] but according to a local news station in India, the magazine faced mild oppositions when they excluded Bollywood actor Shahrukh Khan from their list in this year, even though he was supposedly said to be very much "in the race". Khan's fan following has been claimed [18] [ by whom? ] to be one of the biggest in contemporary cinema and this decision came as a surprise to readers. [19] Oprah Winfrey continued her streak of having been included on every Time 100 list and was one of thirty-one women on the list. The list included many expected names and some surprises such as Scott Brown, who The Huffington Post described as a premature selection at that point in his career. [20] Others who were considered surprise selections included Elton John, Ashton Kutcher, and Taylor Swift, according to the Daily Mail . [21]

The announcement of the list was celebrated by a black tie gala at the Time Warner Center in New York City on May 4, 2010. The list was published the following day. [21] Time readers contributed to the selection by an online vote of over 200 finalists. [22]


In 2009, the winner of the annual Time 100 online poll was moot (Christopher Poole), who founded the 4chan website. In the poll, Poole received 16,794,368 votes. Time magazine claimed that their technical team "did detect and extinguish several attempts to hack the vote". [23] However, it was shown weeks before the poll ended that the results had been heavily influenced by hackers. The first letters of the top 21 names spell out "marblecake also the game". Marblecake, also an obscene 4chan meme, was the name of the IRC channel (which would appear on IRC as #marblecake) used for communication by some of the participants in rigging the poll. [24] [25]


Multiple appearances

Although each category is given equal weight every year, some people are more likely to make repeat appearances on the list from year to year. Repeat appearances are rare; only the following individuals have appeared more than twice.

Note: The order of the following list is based on the number of times each person has appeared on the Time 100. Those who are tied are listed alphabetically. Those listed in bold are the select few whose repeat appearances include Time's ranking of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century.

Listed five times or more

Listed four times

Listed three times

Selection criteria

In 2004, Time's editors identified "three rather distinct qualities", when choosing the Time 100 explained Time's editor-at-large Michael Elliott:

First, there were those who came to their status by means of a very public possession of power; President George W. Bush is the pre-eminent example. Others, though they are rarely heard from in public, nonetheless have a real influence on the great events of our time. Think of Ali Husaini Sistani, the Grand Ayatullah of Iraq's Shi'ites. Still others affect our lives through their moral example. Consider Nelson Mandela's forgiveness of his captors and his willingness to walk away from the South African presidency after a single term. [26]

In the 2007 Time 100 list, managing editor Richard Stengel explained that the Time 100 was not a list of the hottest, most popular, or most powerful people, but rather the most influential, stating:

Influence is hard to measure, and what we look for is people whose ideas, whose example, whose talent, whose discoveries transform the world we live in. Influence is less about the hard power of force than the soft power of ideas and example. Yes, there are Presidents and dictators who can change the world through fiat, but we're more interested in innovators like Monty Jones, the Sierra Leone scientist who has developed a strain of rice that can save African agriculture. Or heroes like the great chessmaster Garry Kasparov, who is leading the lonely fight for greater democracy in Russia. Or Academy Award winning actor George Clooney who has leveraged his celebrity to bring attention to the tragedy in Darfur. [ citation needed ]

Time 100 Award trophies

From 2005 to 2008, Time magazine awarded one of Darko Mladenovic's Ray crystal sculptures to each Time 100 honoree. These sculptures were produced by Swarovski.


World leader exclusions

The fact that the then British Prime Minister Tony Blair was excluded from the 2004 list caused mild controversy. Time editor-at-large Michael Elliott defended the decision to consistently exclude Blair by saying that "Gerhard Schröder and Jacques Chirac are not there either. This is a worldwide list. There are no Western European political leaders on it because they are not that powerful or influential at this time". [27]

Although George W. Bush has been on the list several times, controversy emerged when he was dropped from the list in 2007 in part because of the Democratic victory in the 2006 congressional election. [28] Former Senator Rick Santorum (R–PA) of Fox News said:

The fact of the matter is, the president of the United States, I don't care who's in that office, is the most powerful man on the face of the Earth and has more influence over various aspects of lives, not just in this country, but around the world. And for Time magazine to dismiss that just shows you how biased and, I would argue, hateful they are. [29]

Adi Ignatius, Time's deputy managing editor who oversaw the list at the time explained that "any U.S. president has a certain built-in influence", and that "Bush had actually squandered some of that built-in influence. His position on Iraq has cost him support in his own party...To a certain point, he sort of reached a lame-duck status". [30]

Controversial figure inclusions

The list has generated controversy over who was included in other years as well. In 2005, conservative commentator Ann Coulter was listed, which led Salon to observe:

When Time magazine named Ann Coulter among its 100 "most influential people" last week, alongside such heavyweights as Ariel Sharon, Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela, Kim Jong Il, and the Dalai Lama, the choice produced guffaws online. Plugging the issue on Fox News last week, Time executive editor Priscilla Painton insisted it was Coulter's use of "humor" that made her so influential, stopping just short of suggesting that Coulter is the conservative Jon Stewart. But even Fox's Bill O'Reilly wasn't buying it. He pressed Painton: "Do you think people, Americans, listen to Ann Coulter? Do you think she has influence in public opinion?" [31]

Time magazine defended Coulter as a bestselling author whose controversial commentary strongly affected the United States' political debates; she did not, however, make additional appearances on the list.


In February 2016, Time included the male British author Evelyn Waugh on its "100 Most Read Female Writers in College Classes" list (he was 97th on the list) which created much media attention and concerns about the level of basic education among the magazine's staff. [32] Time later issued a retraction. In a BBC interview with Justin Webb, a Corpus Christi College, Oxford University English professor Valentine Cunningham stated the mistake was "a piece of profound ignorance on the part of Time magazine". [33]

Use in academic research

The Time 100 was cited in a 2008 academic analysis by Craig Garthwaite and Tim Moore, economists at the University of Maryland, College Park. In light of Oprah Winfrey at that time holding the record for most appearances on the Time 100, the economists decided to measure if Winfrey was influential enough to decide a U.S. presidential election by examining the impact of her endorsement of Barack Obama for president. The economists wrote the following:

Oprah Winfrey is a celebrity of nearly unparalleled influence. She has been named to Time magazine’s list of the 100 most influential people six times—more than any other individual, including the Dalai Lama, Nelson Mandela, Bill Gates, George Clooney, and Rupert Murdoch. She was named one of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century, an honor shared with Albert Einstein, Mohandas Karamchand (Mahatma) Gandhi, and Franklin D. Roosevelt. She was only one of four people who were included on these lists in both the 20th and 21st century. The others included Mandela, Gates, and Pope John Paul II.... The scope of Winfrey’s influence creates a unique opportunity to examine the effect of endorsements on political outcomes. [34]

The economists found a statistically significant correlation between the number of Winfrey fans in a geographic region (as estimated by magazine sales and book club selections) and the number of votes Obama received in that region during the race for the 2008 Democratic presidential primary. They found that the correlation even held up when they controlled for all kinds of confounding variables like race, gender, income, education, and sales of other magazines. They further found that the correlation only emerged after Winfrey had endorsed Obama, suggesting that it was the influence of her endorsement that caused the correlation. When they statistically removed the correlation to see how Obama would have performed without Winfrey's endorsement, they found that over one million votes vanished from Obama's total in the Democratic primary and that Clinton received far more votes. [35]

Time most influential people on the Internet

From 2015, Time also published a list of the 25 most influential people on the Internet, featuring those whose influence and dominance may have changed internet culture; who have support, position, and prominence in various sections of social media; or who use and/or rely on the internet as a platform for change. Those named to the list include figures from American politicians Donald Trump and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to teenage YouTuber s JoJo Siwa and Emma Chamberlain. [36] Lil Nas X, whose debut hit broke the record for most weeks spent atop the Billboard chart after being created and distributed on the internet also made the list, [37] as did actress and presenter Jameela Jamil, who is known more widely beyond her profession for her online activism. [36]

See also

Related Research Articles

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Aside from awards bestowed after being nominated, there are some renowned publications who created some catalog about the World's Most Powerful, Sexiest, Influential and Richest Person. The list presented below is not counted on her total number of awards stated on top of the page, moreover, only the lists wherein Beyoncé considered as placed are reported.


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