Google is a mirror on society..very scary search suggestions

Marco Bertozzi:12.05.2010


Have you had a good look at the search suggestions on Google? Well I thought I would do 5 searches to see what comes up and see what the populus is searching for day to day, holy shit its worrying! Here was what I typed in..

Where do I…
How do I…
Who do I..
When do I..
What do I..

Only when I had done this did I realise that if the suggestions reflect what people are searching for then we are in trouble! So what did I learn? Well first of all we worry about a few key things in life..our Blackberrys and iPhones, sex, tax, life in general and Facebook.

There are a myriad of people out there with some fundamental life decisions to be made. Now I am all for starting with a broad search but I particularly like these two; ‘Where do I begin’ and ‘What do I want to do with my life’ fantastic questions! These people have focus issues and or are high as kites and probably sitting in student digs somewhere looking for a short cut. You might think they are in trouble but there is a group of people who have some of the worst issues imaginable.. ‘Where do I find Chuck Norris’ now thats not your average question but seemingly one many are getting their heads around. Politics in the last few weeks has been a hot topic so I would not be surprised if Nick Clegg was one of many searchers against ‘who do I vote for?’ or perhaps Gordon was a number of those asking ‘who do I inform when I move house?’

Life, sex and babies comes up a lot as you might imagine. The second or third suggestion down when you search ‘What do I’ is repeatable for this blog, take a look yourself, it’s not your average question!

There are whole life stages covered in there too. Some of the top suggestions in response to those questions above included:

1. What do I get my girlfriend for Valentine
2. When do I ovulate
3. How do I know if I am pregnant
4. When do I have my first scan
5. When do I stop paying child maintenance
6. When do I retire

People are clearly turning to the web for the big questions, I imagine they start big and work their way through to the important detail questions such as the oft searched ‘where do the Inuits live!’ Christ it goes on and on, weird and wonderful questions that Google is shining back at us…

The state of Facebook is now very much revealed by these searches with most of the ‘How do I‘ search suggestions being around FB. Mainly ‘how do I close my account’ Much has been made of the FB situation, interesting to see how that goes but I think Google is reflecting a little of the sentiment of the population at the moment.

Finally and probably the best reflection of society is the ‘Who do I’ section. A true reflection of our obsession with celebrity with ‘who do I look like’ how is Google going to tell you that? Where does it start? Such a weird question and I think expecting more of Google than one should do, probably easier to answer the question ‘where do I begin!’ Which celebrity do I look like? Who do I share my birthday with? It seems a constant need to associate with celebrity, it’s a sign of the times I am afraid.

So what do I conclude? I conclude that the world’s population has gone mad! What else can I take out of it? Probably best not to dig too deep!

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2 thoughts on “Google is a mirror on society..very scary search suggestions

  1. I found out about Copywrite traps yesterday. I’m sure most of the weird questions are real, but there must be some thrown in to help prove someone’s nicked their tech.

    Most weird ones sound like they’re people searching for things they’ve heard about but can’t namè like the facebook app that finds your doppelganger. (who do I look like?).

    There are also still more people offline than on. What would you type into Google if you had just bought a pc and had absolutely no idea? What should I do next? Where do I begin?

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