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20 Dec 2013

Biggest Events in 2013 According to Google

With 2013 nothing more than a memory, it's time to look back at the last 12 months according to Google.  Each year the Internet search giant publish an overview of the previous 12 months, based on search pattern trends from around the world.  Whether its celebrities, technology, or something else entirely, Google know exactly what the world was looking for in 2013.
Along with a Zeitgeist video overview, Google also publish the top global searches for the year in a range of categories.  Notable deaths accounted for many of the top trends in 2013, with new tech products also having a big impact.  The death of Nelson Mandela was the top trending Google search of the year, with the December death of actor Paul Walker coming in second and the July overdose of Glee actor Cory Monteith coming in fourth.  The Boston Marathon bombing was the sixth biggest trend of the year.

It was not all tragedies, however, with a number of tech products also having a big impact on the global zeitgeist.  The highly anticipated iPhone 5S was the third most popular search of the year, with the Samsung Galaxy S4 coming in seventh and the PlayStation 4 coming in ninth.  Other global trends which made up the top 10 searches of 2013 were the Harlem Shake meme in fifth position, the Royal Baby in seventh, and North Korea in tenth.

People love searching for people on the Internet, and 2013 was certainly no exception.  Along with the tragedies already listed, other popular people of the year according to Google included Aaron Hernandez, Adrian Peterson, Miley Cyrus, James Gandolfini, Paula Deen, Mindy McCready, and Trayvon Martin.  Taylor Swift and Jenny McCarthy were also very popular in many US cities. 

Popular Google Image searches over the past 12 months were also based mostly around people, with eight of the top ten searches being celebrities.  Selena Gomez came in at fifth position, with Justin Beiber in fourth, Kate Upton in third, and Miley Cyrus in second.  It was not all glamour and celebrity, however, with the Periodic Table coming a respectable ninth and Funny Pictures topping the image list for the year. 

Lots of people are also paying attention to the top search trends in Asia, to find out what is going on in other markets and gain insight into possible crossover trends.  While Korean pop star Psy did not make the global top ten list for the year, his viral video for Gangnam Style was a highlight for sure.  Other Asian search trends getting attention in the west include the Japanese monster anime Attack of the Titans and puzzle game Puzzle and Dragons.

The popularity of Google makes it a valuable resource in the analysis of global trends.  Whether you are a business looking for a market, an artist looking for a theme, or a regular person wanting to keep in touch with the global zeitgeist, the collective consciousness of humanity is easier to see than ever before through the Google search lens.