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What Google’s Year in Search Reveals About Humanity

The top trending searches of the year reveal people’s curiosity about the sad, silly, celebrity, and the serious.

What Google’s Year in Search Reveals About Humanity

As the world’s largest search engine, Google is an integral part of how we see and interpret life—so much so that the word “google” been a part of the Oxford English dictionary since 2006. As such, Google’s Year in Search is perhaps the most reliable litmus test for the zeitgeist than any other year-end roundup we have; certainly more so than Facebook’s or Twitter’s.

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And the takeaway from 2015? There may be hope for humanity yet.

Sure, that damn blue-or-gold dress racked up 73 million searches way back in February, but the world redeemed itself in the months that followed. People focused on social domestic campaigns, giving traction to the Black Lives Matter movement (189 million searches) and celebrating same-sex marriage (108 million searches), while also turning their attention globally by searching for ways to help in the aftermath of the Nepal earthquake in April (85 million searches).

Surprisingly, troubled basketball player Lamar Odom—maybe due to his connection to the Internet-beloved Kardashian clan?—beat out the likes of Adele and Caitlyn Jenner to become the year’s top search term and its most searched-for person, both domestically and globally. As for Jenner, her acceptance speech at the Espys plays over Google’s highlight video. Other top global search terms included the terror attacks in Paris and multiplayer game Agar.io.

So what hints for 2016 can we glean from this year’s trending searches? Republican frontrunner and king of “are-you-kidding-me?” Donald Trump was the most searched-for politician, edging out Democratic foes Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton (the latter of whom didn’t even make the top 10 list). But if that stamps out whatever glimmer of hope there might be for the human race, take heart: Satirical candidate Deez Nuts was more popular than actual presidential hopeful Marco Rubio. Good job, Internet.

Take a look at Google’s top trending U.S. searches of 2015 below, followed by the top global searches.

U.S.:

  1. Lamar Odom
  2. Jurassic World
  3. American Sniper
  4. Caitlyn Jenner
  5. Ronda Rousey
  6. Paris
  7. Agar.io
  8. Chris Kyle
  9. Fallout 4
  10. Straight Outta Compton

Global:

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  1. Lamar Odom
  2. Charlie Hebdo
  3. Agar.io
  4. Jurassic World
  5. Paris
  6. Furious 7
  7. Fallout 4
  8. Ronda Rousey
  9. Caitlyn Jenner
  10. American Sniper

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