The annual State of the Nation Address (SONA) by President Zuma, brought Cape town to a standstill. And, certainly garnered a lot of attention online. It was not, however, the trending topic on Google over the past few days.
National hero Joost van der Westhuizen trumped SONA in trending search questions. With many people not only expressing sympathy and condolences, but trying to learn more about the disease, which ultimately claimed his life. Four of the top ten trending questions this week were related to the rugby legend: ‘what is motor neuron disease?', ‘what causes motor neuron disease?’, ‘is Joost van der Westhuizen dead?’, and ‘how old was Joost van der Westhuizen?’.
What is motor neuron disease?
What causes motor neuron disease?
What is a CT scan?
Is Joost van der Westhuizen dead?
When is Sona 2017?
How old was Joost van der Westhuizen?
What is lupus?
What are the three ingredients required for a healthy relationship?
What is intersex?
How to make flapjacks
Terms trending in search this week included ‘Rand to Dollar’ on Friday (presumably in the wake of the events in Parliament last night), with some 5 000+ searches. ‘Sona 2017 live’ trended on Thursday with some 10 000+ searches. And, the term ‘Sona 2017’, trended Wednesday with 100 000+ searches, with search interest peaking at 8:30pm on Thursday night.
Politics or no politics, the nation was, as always, also after sports news with ‘Mamelodi Sundowns’ and ‘Sundowns’ trending Thursday with 2 000+ searches each. ‘Barcelona’ trended Wednesday with 5 000+ searches, and ‘CricInfo’ and ‘Cricket Live Scores’ trended Tuesday with 10 000+ and 5 000+ searches, respectively.
This information is gleaned from data collated by Google, based on what South Africans have been searching for, and asking Google, this week. Google processes more than 40 000 search queries every second. This translates to more than a billion searches per day, and 1.2 trillion searches per year, worldwide.