Google have released their annual list of the most popular search terms to show us what we were looking at online in 2013. Let’s take a look back at 2013 online…
Channel 5 air Celebrity Big Brother in January, letting us watch z-list faces 24 hours a day, and in January it proved very popular. The line-up included X-Factor star Rylan, US reality TV stars Heidi & Spencer, former footballer Neil Ruddock and Steps singer Clare Richards. The show was the most searched for term in January of this year, and it seems that aside from watching familiar faces of an evening, we were also enjoying a spot of tennis, with the Australian Open coming 2nd in the rankings. This could have something to do with Brit Andy Murray making it to the final, where he was unfortunately pipped to the post by Novak Djokovic. Third in the list for January was ‘school closures’ after adverse weather conditions at the start of the year saw schools and businesses closing without warning.
In February this year, the most searched for term was Oscar Pistorius: the Paralympic champion who was accused of murder after his partner was shot dead in the night at the couples’ home in South Africa. The news shocked the nation and seemingly we all turned to the web to find out more. We were also searching for ‘PS4’ after Sony announced the details of their latest console and the third most popular search term was ‘harlem shake’,’ the dance phenomenon that swept dance-floors across the UK.
In March this year we saw the passing of Richard Griffiths, star of Harry Potter, History Boys, Pirates of the Caribbean and Withnial and I, amongst others. His unfortunate death saw him become the top most searched term on Google, closely followed by ITV show Broadchurch. In third place in March was the date in all the economists and politicians calendars – the Budget 2013.
In April, another death took top spot in the Google searches. This time it was former Prime Minister Baroness Margaret Thatcher, who lost her battle against ill health at the age of 87 following a stroke. In 2nd place was the Grand National – the horse race that gets everyone heading down to the bookies, racing fan or not. This year the winner was Auroras Encore! The 3rd most popular search term was ‘Boston Marathon’ following the devastating events that surrounded the event when bombings took place at the finish line.
In May it appears we all flocked to Google to find out about Microsofts answer to Sony’s PS4; XBox One. We were also looking for the Woolwich attack, after a serving British Army soldier Drummer (Private) Lee Rigby was brutally and publicly murdered in the street in broad daylight . The attack was the 2nd most searched for term of May 2013, with Eurovision taking 3rd spot. This year’s competition was held in Sweden, with Denmark taking the crown, sending the contest to Copenhagen in 2014.
As summer came and the sun appeared, we all got behind Andy Murray again – this time at Wimbledon, the number one search term for June. He went on to win the grand-slam making him the first British male to win the tournament in 77 years, and along with the title he also swooped Sports Personality of the Year 2013 for his win in December this year. The 2nd most searched for person was Nigella Lawson; the TV chef made headlines when then-husband Charles Saatchi was pictured grabbing her throat and nose in a public row over dinner in London. Since then, the marriage has fallen apart and a high profile court case has seen details of the now seperated couple’s private lives brandished across newspaper front pages up and down the country. The third most popular search term was Nelson Mandela. The former South Africa leader was taken ill in hospital and supporters worldwide feared this signalled the end for Madiba, who went on to live until December when he unfortunately passed away on the same night a film about his life premiered in London.
This month, Prince George took over the Google searches and ‘royal baby’ was the most searched term. Thousands upon thousands lined the streets, the palace and the hospital he was born in to wish the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge well on the birth of their first child. Following Prince George, late Glee star Cory Monteith was also a popular search term after he was found dead in a hotel room following a fatal concoction of heroin and alcohol. In 3rd place this month was the TV personality whose being getting us all riled in 2013 – Katie Hopkins. July saw the now infamous debate on This Morning in which Katie said her children were not allowed to be friends with those who had ‘common’ sounding names. She sparked fury across the nation and has continued to be controversial all year, with outspoken views regarding life expectancy, maternity leave, weight and others in the public eye.
Doctor Who; love it or hate it, it’s hard to avoid. In August this year, Peter Capaldi was unveiled as the new doctor and all month we were looking him up on Google, making him top of the rankings in August. Behind him was ‘Cheryl Cole tattoo’ after the pop star Instagrammed a picture of her latest tattoo – a huge rose design spanning across her lower back, bum and the top of her thighs! In third place, right in time with the start of the new football season was ‘The Sun Dream Team’, the fantasy football league offered annually by The Sun newspaper with big cash rewards.
Co-insiding with the start of the new academic year, MyMaths was the top Google search in September, closely followed by ‘Rightmove uk’, the online housing catalogue. The third most popular search term was Charlie Hunnam, the actor named as playing Christian Grey in the upcoming movie based on the bestselling book 50 Shades of Grey – just weeks later he pulled out and was replaced by Brit Jamie Dornan.
In October, scaremongering news headlines warned us all of the ‘false widow spider’, a lethal breed of spider being brought to the UK. Through fear it seems we all went online to find out more about the spiders, making them the most searched thing on Google this month. In 2nd place was Lou Reed, who sadly lost his battle against liver disease on October 27th after having a living transplant in May this year. Finally, the third most searched term this month was ‘bitstrips’, the customisable comic strips that were clogging up our Facebook timelines!
This month the most popular search term was ‘Black Friday’ – the day online stores went sale crazy. A tradition that’s spread from America (whereby shops have flash sales the day after Thanksgiving) arrived here a few years ago online. However, this year shoppers went crazy when online sales were bigger than ever and in some cases even spilled over into stores. In 2nd place was ‘McBusted’ – Busted & McFly coming together to create a ‘supergroup’ for a tour in 2014. Fans of both groups went crazy over the news and their tour sold out instantly, with dates being added constantly. In third place was ‘Annabel Giles’, the former model was annouced as a contenstant on ‘I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here!’ and around the same time rumours began to circulate concerning her sexuality.
As the year drew to a close and Christmas came, the number one search term on Google was Paul Walker, the Fast & Furious star who lost his life in an untimely and shocking manner in a car accident en route to a charity event. The second most popular search time was ‘Nelson Mandela’, after he lost his long battle against ill health in hospital in South Africa. In third place was Tom Daley the Team GB diver who came out in a Youtube video explaining his decision.
Photo courtesy of Robert Scoble via Flikr