Positively PayPal: 1998 Fun Facts and Trivia

Updated on February 18, 2019
Gregory DeVictor profile image

Gregory DeVictor is a trivia enthusiast who loves to write articles on American nostalgia.

In 1998, PayPal was launched.
In 1998, PayPal was launched.

What are some fun facts and trivia from 1998? For openers, Google and PayPal were both launched, Bill Gates was pied, and “Washington was about to explode” over the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal. Mercedes-Benz bought Chrysler, Exxon bought Mobil, British Petroleum bought Amoco, and AOL acquired CompuServe. Internet blogs appeared for the first time, popular tech terms were “AOL dial-up” and “reboot,” and the first MP3 player was released in Japan.

In 1998, John Glenn became the oldest man to fly in space, Walmart launched its in-store television network, and California became the first state to ban smoking in bars, casinos, and bar-restaurants. Frank Sinatra passed away, the “Howard Stern Radio Show” premiered, and the cost of a Super Bowl ad was $1,292,000. “Take a chill pill” meant to relax or stop worrying, “bogus” was slang for not good, and “booyah” was an expression of joy or triumph.

Back in 1998, Michael and Emily were popular baby names, flank steak and molten chocolate cake were crowd-pleasers, and bucket hats and blue eyeshadow were all the rage. The average lifespan in the U.S. was 76.58 years, Disney’s Animal Kingdom opened on Earth Day, and Google’s first “Google Doodle” appeared on their web page.

In 1998, the prime rate was 7.75%, one ounce of gold was $288.00, and the average price for a gallon of gas was $1.06. The minimum wage was $5.15, the median household income was $38,568.00, and the average price of a new car was $17,200.00. A gallon of milk cost $3.16, a loaf of bread was $1.26, and a dozen eggs were 88 cents.

Back in 1998, the Denver Broncos were the Super Bowl champs, the New York Yankees won the World Series, and the Detroit Red Wings clinched the Stanley Cup. “Titanic” won an Oscar for Best Picture, “The Practice” (ABC) won an Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series, and “Sunny Came Home” won a Grammy for Record of the Year.

In 1998, President Clinton signed the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) into law. At about the same time, the Internet properties DMOZ, ICANN, Lending Tree, Yahoo! Auctions, Yahoo! Finance, Yahoo! Groups, Yahoo! Messenger, and Yahoo! Movies were all launched.

Back in 1998, Barry Bonds married Elizabeth Watson, Roseanne Barr filed for divorce from her third husband, and the Broadway musical "Grease" closed after 1,503 performances. The TV sitcom "Sex and the City" premiered, the movie "Shakespeare in Love" was released, and the final two-part episode of “Seinfeld” aired to 76.3 million viewers.

On the international stage, the Good Friday Agreement for Northern Ireland was signed by the British and Irish governments, the Winter Olympics were held in Nagano, Japan, and Tony Blair became the first Prime Minister of the UK to address the Republic of Ireland's Parliament.

Table of Contents

For your convenience, I have divided this article into the following categories:

  1. Grocery Prices in 1998
  2. USA News
  3. International News
  4. Sports Trivia
  5. Miscellaneous Fun Facts and Trivia
  6. Computer News
  7. The 50 Most Popular Websites in 1998
  8. Nobel Prize Winners
  9. Most Popular Television Shows for 1998-1999
  10. Best-Selling Fiction & Nonfiction Books
  11. Most Popular Movies of the Year
  12. Horror Movies from 1998
  13. 70th Annual Academy Awards
  14. Biggest Pop Artists
  15. Number One Hits for the Year
  16. 40th Annual Grammy Awards
  17. Most Popular Video Games
  18. Popular Foods & Beverages
  19. Heartthrobs & Hunks
  20. Famous Weddings & Divorces
  21. Popular Toys
  22. Famous People Who Died in 1998
  23. America’s Largest Corporations
  24. Internet Companies Established in 1998

In 1998, Google was launched out of a rented garage in Menlo Park, California.
In 1998, Google was launched out of a rented garage in Menlo Park, California.

Grocery Prices in 1998

These consumer facts have been made available courtesy of the Morris County Public Library in Whippany, NJ.

  1. Arugula (fresh) - 79 cents a package

  2. Beef (ground sirloin) - $1.79 a pound

  3. Beef (sirloin steak, boneless) - $2.89 a pound

  4. Broccoli - 99 cents for a large bunch

  5. Cantaloupe - 99 cents each

  6. Cheese (Alpine Lace) - $4.99 a pound

  7. Chicken - $1.29 a pound

  8. Cucumbers (Jersey fresh) - Four for 99 cents

  9. Eggplant (Jersey fresh) - 99 cents a pound

  10. Eggs - 99 cents a dozen

  11. Fish (Tilapia filet, fresh) - $6.99 a pound

  12. Ham steak - $2.59 a pound

  13. Mangos - Two for 99 cents

  14. Milk (nonfat) - $2.29 a gallon

  15. Nectarines - 79 cents a pound

  16. Peaches - 79 cents a pound

  17. Soda (Coca-Cola) - 89 cents for a two-liter bottle

  18. Tomatoes (beefsteak) - 99 cents a pound

USA News

  1. In 1998, Bill Clinton was President of the United States and Al Gore was Vice-President.

  2. Because of advancements in medicine, people born in 1998 have a better chance of living in three different centuries than any other group of humans in history.

  3. Unemployment averaged 4.5%. According to BLS.gov, “The national unemployment rate reached its lowest point since 1969, and 13 states posted their lowest annual average rates since the beginning of their series (usually the mid-1970s)--Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, South Carolina, Virginia, and Wisconsin.” Conversely, the states with the highest unemployment rates were West Virginia (6.6%), Hawaii (6.2%), and New Mexico (6.2%).

  4. The rate of inflation was 1.56%. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index, “Purchasing power decreased by 1.56% in 1998 compared to the previous year, 1997. On average, you would have to spend 1.56% more money in 1998 than in 1997 for the same item. In other words, $1 in 1997 is equivalent in purchasing power to $1.02 in 1998.”

  5. In 1998, a gallon of milk cost $3.16, a loaf of bread was $1.26, a dozen eggs were 88 cents, one pound of bacon was $2.53, and bananas were about 50 cents a pound.

  6. Here were the sticker prices for three best-selling 1998 cars: a Ford Taurus cost $15,988.00, a Honda Civic LX was $16,345.00, and a Toyota Camry LE cost $15,995.00.

  7. In 1998, the prime rate was 7.75%, one ounce of gold was $288.00, and the average price for a gallon of gas was $1.06.

  8. The federal minimum wage was $5.15, the median household income was $38,568.00, and the average price of a new car was $17,200.00.

  9. In January 1998, the median cost of a newly-built, single-family home in the United States was $148,000 while the average price was $178,600. Comparatively, in January 2018, the median cost of a newly-built, single-family home in the U.S. was $329,600 while the average price was $377,800.

  10. On January 1, California became the first state in the U.S. to ban indoor smoking in bars, restaurants, and casinos.

  11. On January 7, former White House intern Monica Lewinsky “signed an affidavit denying that she had an affair with President Bill Clinton.”

  12. On January 15, NASA announced that 76-year-old John Glenn might fly in space again.

  13. On February 6, Washington National Airport was renamed Ronald Reagan National Airport.

  14. On February 10, AOL raised the monthly service charge for Internet access from $19.95 to $21.95.

  15. On May 7, Mercedes-Benz bought Chrysler for $40 billion and formed DaimlerChrysler. At the time, it was the largest industrial merger in history.

  16. On May 18, the United States Department of Justice and 20 U.S. states filed an antitrust case against Microsoft alleging that they had a monopoly on the software market.

  17. On June 5, a seven-week strike began at the General Motors parts factory in Flint, Michigan that quickly spread to five other assembly plants.

  18. On August 12, British Petroleum announced that it would purchase American oil giant Amoco for $48.2 billion in stock.

  19. On August 17, President Clinton admitted in taped testimony that he had an "improper physical relationship" with Monica Lewinsky. He also admitted that he had misled the American people about the relationship.

  20. On October 29, John Glenn, at age 77, became “the oldest man to fly in space by serving as a payload specialist on STS-95 aboard the space shuttle Discovery.”

  21. On December 1, the world’s biggest oil company, ExxonMobil, was established after Exxon bought Mobil for $73.7 billion.

  22. In 1998, Walmart launched its Wal-Mart Television Network, “a vast, in-store advertising network showing commercials for products sold in the stores.”

International News

  1. On January 21, Pope John Paul II visited Cuba and condemned the U.S. embargo against the country.

  2. On January 25, Britain's Queen Elizabeth received an emergency hip replacement.

  3. On February 3, stamps commemorating Diana, Princess of Wales, went on sale in Great Britain.

  4. On February 4, Bill Gates was hit in the face with a cream pie while visiting Brussels, Belgium.

  5. On February 7, the 18th Winter Olympics opened in Nagano, Japan. According to the Japanese Olympic Committee, “A total of 2,176 athletes (1,389 men and 787 women) from 72 countries and regions took part in 68 events in seven sports, including, for the first time, snowboarding and curling.” The games closed on February 22.

  6. On February 24, singer, pianist, and composer Elton John was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.

  7. On April 10, the Good Friday or Belfast Agreement for Northern Ireland was signed by the British and Irish governments. The Agreement brought an end to 30 years of “sectarian conflict in Northern Ireland” known as “The Troubles.” BBC.com confirms that the agreement “was ratified in a referendum on both sides of the Irish border in May 1998 and set up a power-sharing assembly to govern Northern Ireland by cross-community consent.”

  8. On July 6, Hong Kong's Kai Tak Airport closed and the new Hong Kong International Airport at Chek Lap Kok opened for business.

  9. On November 9, capital punishment in the UK--already abolished for murder--was completely abolished “for all remaining capital offences.”

  10. On November 26, Tony Blair became the first Prime Minister of the UK to address the Republic of Ireland's Parliament.

In 1998, “Washington was about to explode” over the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal.
In 1998, “Washington was about to explode” over the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal.

Sports Trivia

This sports news from 1998 has been made available courtesy of Pop-Culture.us.

  • World Series Champions - New York Yankees

  • Super Bowl Champs - Denver Broncos

  • NBA Champions - Chicago Bulls

  • Stanley Cup Champs - Detroit Red Wings

  • NCAA Basketball Champions - Kentucky

  • NCAA Football Champs - Tennessee

  • U.S. Open Golf - Lee Janzen

  • U.S. Tennis (men/women) - Patrick Rafter/Lindsay Davenport

  • Wimbledon (men/women) - Pete Sampras/Jana Novotna

  • Kentucky Derby - Real Quiet

  • World Cup (soccer) - France

Miscellaneous Fun Facts and Trivia

  1. In 1998, popular baby names were Jacob, Michael, Matthew, Joshua, Emily, Hannah, Samantha, and Ashley.

  2. The average lifespan in the U.S. was 76.58 years.

  3. The cost of a Super Bowl ad was $1,292,000.

  4. Fashion trends for women in 1998 included bucket hats, chokers, wedge sandals, and blue eyeshadow. For men, black shirts, black ties, black suits, black leather reefer jackets, and trenchcoats were all the rage.

  5. Back in 1998, a General Electric air conditioner cost $319.00, a GE dishwasher was $469.00, and a GE refrigerator cost $319.00. A Whirlpool washing machine cost $249.00, a Hoover upright vacuum was $69.99, and a Kitchenaid gas range cost $399.00.

  6. A portable CD player cost $34.99, a Panasonic camcorder was $489.00, and a Panasonic 27” television cost $329.00. Four dozen Titleist golf balls were $20.00, a 20-piece bucket of sidewalk chalk cost $1.77, and a Fuji 35mm camera was $27.99.

  7. On January 14, the 100th episode of the TV series "Ellen" aired.

  8. On January 22, baseball left fielder Rickey Henderson rejoined the Oakland Athletics for the fourth time.

  9. On January 25, the Broadway musical "Grease" closed after 1,503 performances.

  10. On February 11, the lyrics to Elton John’s "Candle in the Wind 1997" were auctioned for $442,500. The proceeds went to charity.

  11. On February 27, General Hospital was named the “Favorite Show” at the 14th Soap Opera Digest Awards.

  12. On February 23, the “Howard Stern Radio Show” premiered in Charleston, South Carolina.

  13. On April 22, Disney's Animal Kingdom, a “zoological theme park,” opened at Walt Disney World in Florida. Covering 580 acres, it is the largest theme park in the world.

  14. On May 14, the final two-part episode of “Seinfeld” aired to 76.3 million viewers.

  15. On June 6, the TV sitcom "Sex and the City" premiered on HBO. The show starred Sarah Jessica Parker, Kim Cattrall, Kristin Davis, and Cynthia Nixon.

  16. On July 24, the movie "Saving Private Ryan,” starring Tom Hanks, Edward Burns, and Matt Damon, was released. The film later won five Academy Awards, including Best Director, Best Editing, Best Cinematography, Best Sound, and Best Sound Effects Editing.

  17. On September 13, the 50th Primetime Emmy Awards were held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. “The Practice” (ABC) was named Outstanding Drama Series, “Frasier” (NBC) was named Outstanding Comedy Series, and the “Late Show with David Letterman” (CBS) was named Outstanding Variety, Music, or Comedy Series.

  18. On November 3, the movie "Shakespeare in Love," starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Joseph Fiennes, premiered in New York. The film later won seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actress, and Best Supporting Actress.

In 1998, the final two-part episode of “Seinfeld” aired to 76.3 million viewers.
In 1998, the final two-part episode of “Seinfeld” aired to 76.3 million viewers.

Computer News

These fun facts and trivia from 1998 have been made available courtesy of ComputerHope.com.

  1. In 1998, there was no Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, or Pinterest. By the same token, there was no Reddit, Tumblr, WhatsApp, Quora, or LinkedIn. Although Google was founded in 1998, there were no Google Maps, Google Books, or Google Goggles. Likewise, iPhones, camera phones, iPods, Blu-ray discs, Amazon Kindle, Skype, Gmail, Wikipedia, and iTunes did not exist yet.

  2. Here is a partial list of Internet properties that were established in 1998: The Daily Howler, ClickBank, DMOZ, eBid, Google, HowStuffWorks, Imagine Radio, Legacy.com, the LendingTree, News24, PayPal, Pets.com, Shopping.com, Speedy Click, Traffic.com, WebMoney, Yahoo! Auctions, Yahoo! Finance, Yahoo! Groups, Yahoo! Messenger, and Yahoo! Movies.

  3. In 1998, Internet blogs appeared for the first time.

  4. Internet acronyms included A/S/L (age/sex/location), DOS (disk-operating system), ICQ (“I seek you.”), IRC (Internet relay chat), and TTFN (ta-ta for now).

  5. Popular tech terms were AOL dial-up, defragging, information superhighway, netizen, palmtop, publify, reboot, and screensaver.

  6. Back in 1998, Microsoft released Windows 98, FrontPage 98, and the 6.0 version of Visual Basic. Microsoft also announced that “future releases of Windows NT would no longer have the initials of NT and that the next edition would be Windows 2000.”

  7. In 1998, Sony released the high-capacity floppy disk.

  8. In the spring of 1998, MPMan, the first MP3 player, was released in Japan.

  9. In May, Adobe Photoshop 5.0 was released.

  10. On May 18, the United States Department of Justice and 20 U.S. states filed an antitrust case against Microsoft alleging that they had a monopoly on the software market.

  11. On July 14, ComputerHope.com went online.

  12. In August, Apple introduced the iMac.

  13. On August 20, the first “Google Doodle” appeared on their web page to celebrate “burning man.” ComputerHope.com explains that a Google Doodle “refers to an artistic expression of Google's logo on its search engine homepage. Google often creates a Google Doodle to commemorate a noteworthy figure's birthday, a holiday, an anniversary, or another significant event. A Google Doodle is often comprised of a conglomeration of pictures, animation, and the Google logo. Some Google Doodles are even interactive and contain videos.”

  14. In September, Internet Explorer surpassed Netscape in Internet browser market share for the first time.

  15. In September, PayPal, one of the most widely used payment services in the world, was launched. The company was founded by Max Levchin, Elon Musk, Peter Thiel, Luke Nosek, and Ken Howery. Max Levchin described PayPal as “a security focused company which allowed users to store encrypted information on Palm Pilots and other PDA devices, enabling their handheld devices to become digital wallets.” In October 1999, PayPal was launched to the public, allowing anyone with a valid email address to send or receive money.

  16. On September 4, Google filed for incorporation in California. Shortly after, its founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin set up corporate headquarters in Susan Wojcicki's garage in Menlo Park, California. Wired.com tells us that “Google's search engine was already getting 10,000 queries a day while still in beta. The following year, Google moved into a real office in Palo Alto, saw its staff explode to eight employees, and by late 1999 was answering 500,000 queries per day. That arc has pretty much continued to this day.”

  17. On September 18, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) was formed.

  18. On September 30, Amazon.com went offline for ten hours for routine maintenance.

  19. On October 19, Ask.com went online.

  20. On October 28, President Clinton signed the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) into law. According to Margaret Rouse, “The intent behind [the] DMCA was to create an updated version of copyright laws to deal with the special challenges of regulating digital material.”

The 50 Most Popular Websites in 1998

This Internet trivia has been made available courtesy of TheMarySue.com.

  1. AOL.com

  2. Yahoo.com

  3. GeoCities.com

  4. MSN.com

  5. Netscape.com

  6. Excite.com

  7. Lycos.com

  8. Microsoft.com

  9. BlueMountainArts.com

  10. InfoSeek Sites

  11. AltaVista Search

  12. Tripod.com

  13. Xoom.com

  14. AngelFire.com

  15. Hotmail.com

  16. Amazon.com

  17. Real.com

  18. ZDNET.com

  19. Hotbot.com

  20. InfoSpace.com

  21. Ebay.com

  22. Disney Online

  23. Snap.com

  24. Weather.com

  25. ICQ.com

  26. Barnes & Noble

  27. SimpleNet.com

  28. CNN.com

  29. MSNBC.com

  30. Pathfinder.com

  31. MiningCo.com

  32. DigitalCity.com

  33. ESPN

  34. Looksmart.com

  35. eToys.com

  36. Sony Online

  37. Bonzi.com

  38. FortuneCity.com

  39. CNET Software

  40. Switchboard.com

  41. EarthLink.net

  42. MapQuest.com

  43. Warner Bros. Online

  44. ATT.net

  45. Webcrawler.com

  46. GoTo.com

  47. Egghead.com

  48. CompuServe.com

  49. CDNow.com

  50. MusicBlvd.com

In 1998, the film “Titanic” won an Oscar for Best Picture.
In 1998, the film “Titanic” won an Oscar for Best Picture.

Nobel Prize Winners

This Nobel Prize news has been made available courtesy of InfoPlease.com.

Peace: John Hume and David Trimble (both from Northern Ireland), whose efforts made Northern Ireland's Good Friday peace accord possible in 1998 and which have led to political progress in a deep-rooted conflict. InfoPlease.com tells us that “Hume is the leader of the Catholic Social Democratic and Labor Party, and Trimble heads the predominant Protestant Ulster Unionist Party.”

Literature: José Saramago (Portugal), who, “with parables sustained by imagination, compassion, and irony, continually enables us once again to apprehend an elusory reality.”

Physics: Robert B. Laughlin (U.S.), Horst L. Störmer (Germany), and Daniel C. Tsui (U.S.), “for their discovery of a new form of quantum fluid with fractionally charged excitations.”

Chemistry: Walter Kohn (U.S.) and John A. Pople (U.K.), “for their developments in the study of the properties of molecules and the chemical processes in which they are involved.

Medicine: Robert F. Furchgott, Louis J. Ignarro, and Ferid Murad (all from the U.S.), “for discovering that nitric oxide acts as a signal in the cardiovascular system.”

Economics: Amartya Sen (India), “for his contributions to welfare economics.”

Most Popular Television Shows for 1998-1999

This TV trivia has been made available courtesy of FBibler.Chez.com. Please note that the rankings are from adults 18-49.

  1. ER (NBC)

  2. Friends (NBC)

  3. Frasier (NBC)

  4. Monday Night Football (ABC)

  5. Veronica's Closet (NBC)

  6. Jesse (NBC)

  7. 60 Minutes (CBS)

  8. Touched by an Angel (CBS)

  9. CBS Sunday Night Movie (CBS)

  10. Home Improvement (ABC)

  11. Everybody Loves Raymond (CBS)

  12. N.Y.P.D. Blue (ABC)

  13. Law and Order (NBC)

  14. The Drew Carey Show (ABC)

  15. 20/20 (Friday) (ABC)

  16. Providence (NBC)

  17. 20/20 (Wednesday) (ABC)

  18. JAG (CBS)

  19. Dateline (Tuesday) (NBC)

  20. Dateline (Monday) (NBC)

  21. Becker (CBS)

  22. CBS Tuesday Night Movie (CBS)

  23. Ally McBeal (Fox)

  24. Dharma & Greg (ABC)

  25. Spin City (ABC)

Best-Selling Fiction & Nonfiction Books

These facts have been made available courtesy of PublishersWeekly.com.

Fiction:

  1. The Street Lawyer by John Grisham

  2. Rainbow Six by Tom Clancy

  3. Bag of Bones by Stephen King

  4. A Man in Full by Tom Wolfe

  5. Mirror Image by Danielle Steel

  6. The Long Road Home by Danielle Steel

  7. The Klone and I by Danielle Steel

  8. Point of Origin by Patricia Cornwell

  9. Paradise by Toni Morrison

  10. All Through the Night by Mary Higgins Clark

  11. I Know This Much Is True by Wally Lamb

  12. Tell Me Your Dreams by Sidney Sheldon

  13. The Vampire Armand by Anne Rice

  14. The Loop by Nicholas Evans

  15. You Belong to Me by Mary Higgins Clark

Nonfiction:

  1. The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom by Suze Orman

  2. The Greatest Generation by Tom Brokaw

  3. Sugar Busters! by H. Leighton Steward, Morrison C. Bethea, Sam S. Andrews and Luis A. Balart

  4. Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom

  5. Guinness Book of World Records 1999

  6. Talking to Heaven by James Van Praagh

  7. Something More: Excavating Your Authentic Self by Sarah Ban Breathnach

  8. In the Meantime by Iyanla Vanzant

  9. A Pirate Looks at Fifty by Jimmy Buffett

  10. If Life Is a Game These Are the Rules by Cherie Carter-Scott

  11. Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt

  12. For the Love of the Game: My Story by Michael Jordan

  13. The Day Diana Died by Christopher Andersen

  14. The Century by Peter Jennings and Todd Brewster

  15. Eat Right 4 Your Type by Peter J. D’Adamo

In 1998, the TV sitcom "Sex and the City" premiered.
In 1998, the TV sitcom "Sex and the City" premiered.

Most Popular Movies of the Year

This movie trivia has been made available courtesy of BoxOfficeMojo.com.

  1. The Big Lebowski

  2. Saving Private Ryan

  3. The Parent Trap

  4. American History X

  5. The Truman Show

  6. Armageddon

  7. Wild Things

  8. The Thin Red Line

  9. Hope Floats

  10. Mulan

  11. Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels

  12. Deep Impact

  13. Rush Hour

  14. Elizabeth

  15. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

  16. Practical Magic

  17. The Prince of Egypt

  18. Blade

  19. There’s Something About Mary

  20. Half Baked

  21. Psycho

  22. A Bug’s Life

  23. Godzilla

  24. Shakespeare in Love

  25. The Wedding Singer

Horror Movies from 1998

Horror films from 1998 included Apt Pupil, Bride of Chucky, Carnival of Souls, Children of the Corn V: Fields of Terror, The Clown at Midnight, Club Vampire, Curse of the Puppet Master, Deep Rising, The Dentist 2, Die Hard Dracula, Dream House, The Faculty, Fantom Killer, Frankenstein Reborn!, Halloween H20: 20 Years Later, Hollywood Mortuary, I Still Know What You Did Last Summer, I've Been Waiting for You, The Killer Eye, Knocking on Death's Door, and The Last Broadcast

Other horror movies were The Minion, Modern Vampires, The Mutilation Man, Nightworld: Lost Souls, Phantasm IV: Oblivion, The Phantom of the Opera, The Prophecy II, Psycho, Rasen, Razor Blade Smile, Ring, Shadow Builder, Shrieker, Strangeland, Tale of the Mummy, Talisman, Trance, Troublesome Night 3, Troublesome Night 4, Tumbling Doll of Flesh, The Untold Story 2, Urban Legend, Vampires, and Whispering Corridors.

In 1998, flank steak was a real crowd-pleaser.
In 1998, flank steak was a real crowd-pleaser.

70th Annual Academy Awards

These film facts have been made available courtesy of BoxOfficeMojo.com.

  1. Best Picture: “Titanic”

  2. Best Director: James Cameron (“Titanic”)

  3. Best Actor: Jack Nicholson (“As Good as It Gets”)

  4. Best Actress: Helen Hunt (“As Good as It Gets”)

  5. Best Supporting Actor: Robin Williams (“Good Will Hunting”)

  6. Best Supporting Actress: Kim Basinger (“L.A. Confidential”)

  7. Best Original Screenplay: “Good Will Hunting”

  8. Best Adapted Screenplay: “L.A. Confidential”

  9. Best Editing: “Titanic”

  10. Best Cinematography: “Titanic”

  11. Best Art Direction: “Titanic”

  12. Best Costume Design: “Titanic”

  13. Best Makeup: “Men in Black”

  14. Best Visual Effects: “Titanic”

  15. Best Sound: “Titanic”

  16. Best Sound Effects Editing: “Titanic”

  17. Best Original Dramatic Score: “Titanic”

  18. Best Original Musical or Comedy Score: “The Full Monty”

  19. Best Original Song: “My Heart Will Go On” (“Titanic”)

  20. Best Live Action Short Film: “Visas and Virtue”

  21. Best Foreign Language Picture: “Karakter” (Netherlands)

  22. Best Documentary Feature: “The Long Way Home”

  23. Best Documentary Short Subject: “A Story of Healing”

  24. Best Animated Short Film: “Geri’s Game”

Biggest Pop Artists

These fun facts and trivia from 1998 have been made available courtesy of Billboard.com.

Aaliyah, Aerosmith, Backstreet Boys, Blackstreet, Brandy, Brian McKnight, Celine Dion, Destiny's Child, Dixie Chicks, Goo Goo Dolls, Janet Jackson, Kenny Chesney, Lauryn Hill, Madonna, Mariah Carey, Matchbox Twenty, Montell Jordan, Next, Puff Daddy, R. Kelly, Redman, Savage Garden, Shania Twain, Spice Girls, Usher, and Will Smith.

Number One Hits from 1998

This information has been made available courtesy of Billboard.com.

  • October 11, 1997 - January 16, 1998: Elton John - Candle in the Wind '97

  • January 17 - January 30: Savage Garden - Truly Madly Deeply

  • January 31 - February 13: Janet Jackson - Together Again

  • February 14 - February 27: Usher - Nice And Slow

  • February 28 - March 13: Céline Dion - My Heart Will Go On

  • March 14 - April 3: Will Smith - Gettin' Jiggy Wit It

  • April 4 - April 24: K-Ci & JoJo - All My Life

  • April 25 - May 22: Next - Too Close

  • May 23 - June 5: Mariah Carey - My All

  • June 6 - September 4: Brandy & Monica - The Boy Is Mine

  • September 5 - October 2: Aerosmith - I Don't Want To Miss A Thing

  • October 3 - October 16: Monica - The First Night

  • October 17 - November 13: Barenaked Ladies - One Week

  • November 14 - November 27: Lauryn Hill - Doo Wop (That Thing)

  • November 28 - December 4: Divine - Lately

  • December 5, 1998 - January 15, 1999: R. Kelly & Céline Dion - I'm Your Angel

In 1998, the TV sitcom “Sex in the City” premiered on HBO.
In 1998, the TV sitcom “Sex in the City” premiered on HBO.

40th Annual Grammy Awards

This music news from 1998 has been made available courtesy of Grammy.com.

  1. Record of the Year: Sunny Came Home

  2. Song of the Year: Sunny Came Home

  3. Album of the Year: Time Out of Mind

  4. Best New Artist: Paula Cole

  5. Best Female Pop Vocal Performance: Building A Mystery

  6. Best Male Pop Vocal Performance: Candle In The Wind 1997

  7. Best Pop Duo/Group Performance: Virtual Insanity

  8. Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals: Don't Look Back

  9. Best Pop Instrumental Performance: Last Dance

  10. Best Dance Recording: Carry On

  11. Best Pop Album: Hourglass

  12. Best Traditional Pop Vocal Performance: Tony Bennett On Holiday

  13. Best Female Rock Vocal Performance: Criminal

  14. Best Male Rock Vocal Performance: Cold Irons Bound

  15. Best Hard Rock Performance: The End Is The Beginning Is The End

  16. Best Metal Performance: Aenema

  17. Best Rock Song: One Headlight

  18. Best Rock Album: Blue Moon Swamp

  19. Best Alternative Music Performance: Ok Computer

  20. Best Female R&B Vocal Performance: On & On

  21. Best Male R&B Vocal Performance: I Believe I Can Fly

  22. Best Rhythm & Blues Song: I Believe I Can Fly

  23. Best R&B Album: Baduizm

  24. Best Rap Solo Performance: Men In Black

  25. Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group: I'll Be Missing You

  26. Best Rap Album: No Way Out

  27. Best Female Country Solo Performance: How Do I Live

  28. Best Male Country Solo Performance: Pretty Little Adriana

  29. Best Country Duo/Group Performance: Looking In The Eyes Of Love

  30. Best Country Song: Butterfly Kisses

  31. Best Country Album: Unchained

  32. Best Bluegrass Album: So Long So Wrong

  33. Best New Age Album: Oracle

  34. Best Contemporary Jazz Performance: Into The Sun

  35. Best Jazz Vocal Performance: Dear Ella

  36. Best Jazz Instrumental Solo: Stardust

  37. Best Latin Jazz Performance: Habana

  38. Best Latin Pop Performance: Romances

  39. Best Traditional Blues Album: Don’t Look Back

  40. Best World Music Album: Nascimento

  41. Best Polka Album: Living On Polka Time

  42. Best Musical Album for Children: All Aboard!

  43. Best Spoken Word Album for Children: Winnie-The-Pooh

  44. Best Spoken Word Album: Charles Kuralt's Spring

  45. Best Spoken Comedy Album: Roll With The New

  46. Best Musical Show Album: Chicago - The Musical

  47. Best Instrumental Composition: Aung San Suu Kyi

  48. Best Instrumental Composition Written for a Motion Picture or for Television: The English Patient

  49. Best Song Written Specifically for a Motion Picture or for Television: I Believe I Can Fly (From Space Jam)

  50. Best Instrumental Arrangement: Straight, No Chaser

Most Popular Video Games

Favorite video games in 1998 included A Bug’s Life, Apocalypse, Baldur’s Gate, Banjo-Kazooie, Blasto, Crash Bandicoot: Warped, Dune 2000, Fallout 2: A Post-Nuclear Role-Playing Game, Grim Fandango, Half-Life, and Jurassic Park: Trespasser.

Other video games were Metal Gear Solid, Mission: Impossible, Rainbow Six, Resident Evil 2, Small Soldiers, Small Soldiers: Squad Commander, Sonic Adventure, South Park, Spyro the Dragon, StarCraft, The Fifth Element, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, The X-Files Game, and Tomb Raider III: Adventures of Lara Croft.

In 1998, a cosmopolitan or cosmo was a favorite cocktail from New York to San Francisco.
In 1998, a cosmopolitan or cosmo was a favorite cocktail from New York to San Francisco.

Popular Foods & Beverages

These fun facts and trivia from 1998 have been made available courtesy of Delish.com and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

  1. Betty Crocker Dunk-a-roos (snack food)

  2. Betty Crocker Scooby Doo Snacks

  3. Cosmopolitan - Made popular by Sarah Jessica Parker and "Sex and the City," a cosmopolitan is a cocktail that combines vodka, triple sec, cranberry, and lime juice.

  4. Creme brûlée

  5. Crystal Pepsi

  6. Doritos’ casseroles

  7. Ellio’s Pizza

  8. Fla-Vor-Ice (A freezie that was “sold in and eaten out of a plastic tube.”)

  9. Flank steak

  10. Funfetti

  11. Garlic

  12. Garlic soup

  13. General Mills Dippin' Dots Cereal

  14. General Mills French Toast Crunch Cereal

  15. Gushers (fruit candy snacks)

  16. Heinz E-Zee Squirt Green Ketchup.

  17. Jawbreakers

  18. Jell-O Pudding Bites

  19. Jell-O cakes

  20. Keebler Fudge Stripes

  21. Linden's Cookies

  22. Lunchables

  23. Molten chocolate cake - Paula Kashtan tells us that “Known for its warm, runny center, this dessert started popping up on restaurant menus all over the country throughout the '90s.”

  24. Nabisco Handi-Snacks

  25. Nestle Wonder Balls

  26. Ouch! Gum

  27. Pillsbury Toaster Strudel

  28. Pineapple pizza

  29. Pizza rolls

  30. Potato Stix

  31. Quaker Dinosaur Eggs Oatmeal

  32. Red Bull Energy Drink - A caffeinated soft drink that came to the USA from Europe in 1997.

  33. Rice Krispies Treats Cereal

  34. Skirt steak

  35. Smucker’s Uncrustables

Heartthrobs & Hunks

These fun facts have been made available courtesy of Pop-Culture.us and IMDB.com

Heartthrobs in 1998 included Alicia Silverstone, Cameron Diaz, Carmen Electra, Cindy Crawford, Claudia Schiffer, Courteney Cox, Drew Barrymore, Elizabeth Hurley, Emma Bunton, Geri Halliwell, Gillian Anderson, Heidi Klum, Isla Fisher, Jennifer Lopez, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Jenny McCarthy, Kelly Brook, Lauryn Hill, Lucy Lawless, Mariah Carey, Melissa George, Nicole Kidman, Pamela Anderson, Sandra Bullock, Sarah Jessica Parker, Teri Hatcher, Tyra Banks, Victoria Beckham, Yasmine Bleeth, and Zoe Ball.

Hunks included Benjamin Bratt, Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Harrison Ford, Joey Lawrence, John Stamos, Keanu Reeves, Mario Lopez, Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Rob Lowe, and Ryan Phillippe.

Famous Weddings & Divorces

This information has been made available courtesy of OnThisDay.com.

Weddings:

  • On January 10, professional baseball outfielder Barry Bonds married Elizabeth Watson.

  • On March 27, author Danielle Steel wed financier Thomas James Perkins.

  • On May 1, "Reality Bites" actor Ethan Hawke married "Pulp Fiction" actress Uma Thurman.

  • On May 1, cyclist Lance Armstrong wed Kristin Richard. (They were divorced in 2003.)

  • On June 20, “Hustler” publisher Larry Flynt married Elizabeth Berrios.

  • On June 21, "Home Alone" actor Macaulay Culkin wed Broadway actress Rachel Miner.

  • On July 1, actress, singer, songwriter, and filmmaker Barbra Streisand married actor James Brolin.

  • On September 4, "Sex and The City" actress Kim Cattrall wed audio designer Mark Levinson.

  • On November 14, professional basketball player Dennis Rodman married "Baywatch" actress Carmen Electra.

  • On November 28, actor Chuck Norris wed former model Gena O'Kelley.

  • On December 30, German Chancellor Angela Merkel married quantum chemist Joachim Sauer.

Divorces:

  • On January 8, actress Roseanne Barr filed for divorce from her third husband Ben Thomas.

  • On March 5, singer Mariah Carey and music executive Tommy Mottola divorced after two years of marriage.

  • On October 13, English professional golfer Nick Faldo divorced Gill Bennett after 12 years of marriage.

In 1998, Google’s first “Google Doodle” appeared on their web page.
In 1998, Google’s first “Google Doodle” appeared on their web page.

Popular Toys

This trivia has been made available courtesy of ThePeopleHistory.com.

  1. AM/FM CD Blast Box

  2. Barbie Porsche Boxster

  3. Bash N' Brawl Wrestlers

  4. Becky Doll

  5. Create a Color Nail Salon

  6. Desert Challenger

  7. Electronic Talking Rotten Egg

  8. Electronic Talking Wishbone

  9. Hip Hoppers

  10. Hot Wheels Car Wash

  11. Kick and Play Piano

  12. McDonaldland Happy Meal Girl Doll

  13. Nerf SuperMaxx 3000 8-Shooter with Target

  14. Pokemon Gameboy Game

  15. Pose-A-Blue

  16. Racing Roller Coaster

  17. Rugrats Giant Plush Friends

  18. Spice Girls Doll Set

  19. Talking Barney

  20. Tamagotchi

  21. Tattoo Studio

  22. Teletubbies Figures

  23. Tonka Chuck My Talking Truck

  24. Wacky Sax

  25. Xena Warrior Princess Board Game

Famous People Who Died in 1998

This celebrity news has been made available courtesy of OnThisDay.com.

  • January 1 - Helen Wills Moody (American tennis player)

  • March 8 - Ray Nitschke (American football player)

  • March 15 - Benjamin Spock (American pediatrician and writer)

  • April 6 - Tammy Wynette (American country singer)

  • April 17 - Linda McCartney (American photographer and wife of Paul McCartney)

  • May 14 - Frank Sinatra (American singer and actor)

  • September 13 - George Wallace (American politician)

  • September 29 - Tom Bradley (Mayor of Los Angeles)

  • October 28 - Ted Hughes (poet and British Poet Laureate)

  • December 24 - Raemer Schreiber (American physicist)

America’s Largest Corporations

  1. General Motors

  2. Ford Motor

  3. Exxon Mobil

  4. Walmart

  5. General Electric

  6. IBM

  7. Chrysler

  8. Mobil

  9. Altria Group

  10. AT&T

  11. Boeing

  12. Texaco

  13. State Farm Insurance

  14. Hewlett-Packard

  15. DuPont

  16. Sears Roebuck

  17. Citigroup

  18. Prudential Insurance

  19. Chevron Texaco

  20. Procter & Gamble

  21. Citicorp

  22. Amoco

  23. Kmart

  24. Merrill Lynch

  25. J.C. Penney Company

Internet Companies Established in 1998

Startups included Adventure Gamers, Airlock Alpha, AllHipHop, AllMovie, AlterNet, Amazon China, Anime News Network, Atom.com, BarrysWorld, Blue Oval News, Brainbench, Break Media, Break.com, Cars.com, CNSNews.com, Computer Hope, The Daily Howler, Digital Journal, DMOZ, eBid, Érudit, Etree, Everything2, EWay, FanFiction.net, FilmWeb, Formsite, Go.com, Google, GovWorks, GreatSchools, HealthBoards, HistoryLink, HowStuffWorks, Imagine Radio, Intermix Media, LastMinute.com, Legacy.com, and LendingTree.

Other startups were Memepool, Moreover Technologies, MoveOn, MozillaZine, Music Online Records, News24, Omniglot, Oneview, Parents Television Council, Pets.com, Pixelon, Questia Online Library, SatireWire, Ship of Fools (website), Shopping.com, SpeedyClick.com, Sperling's BestPlaces, StartPage.com, TextFiles.com, Traffic.com, Tweakers, WebJet, WebMoney, Where's George?, World News Network, Yahoo! Auctions, Yahoo! Finance, Yahoo! Groups, Yahoo! Messenger, and Yahoo! Movies.

In 1998, GeoCities was one of the most-visited websites.
In 1998, GeoCities was one of the most-visited websites.

Questions & Answers

    © 2019 Gregory DeVictor

    Comments

    Submit a Comment
    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      6 weeks ago from UK

      No I don't remember the open directory. Elton John's knighthood rings a bell, but I had forgotten the hip replacement. Google and paypal seem to have been around forever.

    • Gregory DeVictor profile imageAUTHOR

      Gregory DeVictor 

      6 weeks ago from Squirrel Hill, PA

      Hello Liz. Thank you for the comment. Like you, I do not know where all the years have gone. I didn’t realize that both Google and PayPal were launched back in 1998, or that the DMCA was passed and DMOZ was launched. Do you remember the DMOZ Open Directory? Oh yes, I did not know anything about Elton John being knighted either, or the queen mother’s emergency hip replacement. You probably remember all of this.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      6 weeks ago from UK

      The sad thing for me is that 1998 does not seem very long ago! Where have 20 years gone? The Elton John song stayed top of the charts for months after he sang it at the Princess of Wales' funeral. Another outstanding compilation.

    • Gregory DeVictor profile imageAUTHOR

      Gregory DeVictor 

      6 weeks ago from Squirrel Hill, PA

      Hello Mary. Thank you for the comment. What I found very interesting was the list of the 50 most popular websites in 1998. I had completely forgotten about GeoCities and AngelFire.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      6 weeks ago from Ontario, Canada

      I love this capsule of 1998. It brings back memories. Most of the names that were popular then on the internet are no longer around. Change has been so fast since then.

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