Google Trends released its “year in search” report for 2020 which includes the top search topics of the year. The data shown on these graphs include people, news, and world events visualized by their popularity over the year. A lot of the things people searched for aren’t surprising, but it does show that we all were panicking about things at the same time. It makes me feel a little better I guess?
Many things are not featured on these graphs. Tom Hanks was top searched actor, Ryan Newman was top searched athlete, Parasite was top searched movie, Among Us was top searched game, Tiger King was top searched TV show, and Joe Biden was top searched person.
Other events that weren’t didn’t make it into these graphs were the wildfires, Hong Kong protests, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s announcement that they are stepping down, murder hornets, and many more.
The graph is set up in chronological order, listing search terms from top to bottom, sorted by month from left to right.
1. Kicking off the year just horribly.
After Kobe, we moved to the India vs New Zealand cricket championship and Harvey Weinstein who was convicted of sexual assault in late February. Off to a great start so far.
2. Big year for death.
In March, the United States was learning that Coronavirus was a real threat, as shown by the interest in death. (I think most of those searches might just be from me.)
3. We kept looking for solutions.
As everyone settled into the pandemic in April and May, people searched for solutions to their new problems with terms like “Google Classroom” and “Zoom.” Surprisingly, not as many searches for “excuses to get out of a Zoom meetings.”
4. Then a little more chaos.
The death of George Floyd pushed the United States to look at race relations with searches like “Black Lives Matter.” TikTok was feared to be a way for the Chinese government to spy on its users and increased searches during this time as well. A lot of trauma followed by scrolling to self-soothe. I get it.
5. Starting the Summer off with some tragedy.
The explosion in Beirut happened on August 4th. Tesla’s decision to split its stock caused it to soar by 74.2%. The coming election loomed over the United States and people returned to their interest in cricket spiking again with the Indian Premier League.
6. Just a lot of waiting all year.
The suspense waiting for election results and the vaccine was a lot to handle. Now we have both and it only feels a little better.