It was an exciting time. The days before old year's eve 1999. It was the arrival of a new millennium and the notorious Year 2000 Bug. Some people started with serious preparations in case it would be the end of the world. All caused by a computer bug.
The story in short: internal computer clocks were not programmed to handle the time shift from 1999 to 2000, as it was said in the mainstream media. This bug could affect all computers on earth and could trigger world wide chaos.
More info: Wikipedia. The Y2K Bug.
There was the same sort of hype before the arrival of year 2012, the Mayan Calendar and the so called; end of the world prophecy.
This would occur 12 years after year 2000. And 12 is a full circle on a classic analog round clock.