Google’s ‘Year in Search’ Provides Insight Into Big Trends of 2014

Unsolved mysteries, civil unrest, the World Cup and celebrity losses -- Google takes a look at what was important in 2014.

year in search

‘Tis the season for retrospection. To wit, Google took a look at the “Year in Search,” which examines search trends and what was important during 2014.

The disappearance of the Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 was one of the biggest headlines, with more than 200 million searches. Interestingly, the searches skewed toward optimism, with more queries for “MH370 found” than “MH370 lost.” Still, the disappearance of MH370 is still an unsolved mystery.

This year was also a big one for sports, with the World Cup and Sochi Olympics generating lots of search interest. Not only was the 2014 World Cup the most-tweeted sporting event in social media history, it was also the highest scoring of all time and generated 2.2 billion search queries.

There were some big celebrity losses in 2014, including the beloved poet Maya Angelou and the formidable comedienne Joan Rivers. It was the death of Robin Williams that resulted in the biggest increase in search queries for an individual in 2014. Williams’ death also prompted a three-fold increase in searches for “depression,” and searches for “genie aladdin” increased 11 times.