The world's most popular search engine, Google.com, reports its Top Searches each month. Called "Zeitgeist", meaning "spirit of the time", this Google report is quite fascinating. It gives us insight into the minds and the cultural influences of the Internet public. For example, the top search in the Netherlands at one time was "sponge bob", indicating a large family presence on the Internet in that country. After a few months, the same Dutch users searched for "voetbal," "beyonce," and "lord of the rings".
Soccer star, David Beckham, has been a popular search in many countries. "Borat" and "Harry Potter" also figured prominently in Google searches these last 12 months.
Below is a quick sampling of the current Zeitgeist search report for 2007, and the annual report for 2006 and 2005. The results are collated from several billion separate Google searches.
(Note: the search strings are listed in lower case; this is common for search requests on the Internet, and accordingly, this is how Google reports them.)
1. Most popular United Kingdom searches for April 2007: rbs, teenagers, water features.
2. Most popular Germany searches for April 2007: ferienwohnung, torrie wilson, minigames.
3. Most popular Canada searches for April 2007: bcaa, faces, kia.
4. Most popular Italy searches for April 2007: energy saving, lord of the rings, shanghai.
5. Most popular Netherlands searches for April 2007: ciz, independer, wolfenstein.
6. Most popular Australia searches for April 2007: great white shark, fantasy league, resurrection.
7. Most-popular Spain searches for April 2007: el disney, stargate, borat.
8. Most popular Greece searches for April 2007: shrek, holly valance, notis.
9. Most popular USA news searches for April 2007: currency converter, baby names, irs.
10. Most popular men, as searched by France last year: eminem, bertrand cantat, marilyn manson.
11. Most popular men, as searched by Japan last year: gackt, bae yong joon, orange range.
12. Most popular women, as searched by France last year: britney spears, avril lavigne, paris hilton.
So, what can we conclude from these search strings? Are Internet users obsessed with celebrities? Is Paris Hilton the queen of web marketing visibility? Before you draw any lasting conclusions, please note that these results only represent repetitive search strings that recur on Google. There are millions of other search strings that happen, but do not repeat enough to make the Top 10.
Read more about Google's 2006 worldwide search reports, and decide for yourself what it all means: Google Zeitgeist, 2006 Archive
If you want to read more about Google's current 2006 search reports, go here: Google Zeitgeist Home
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