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Google Releases South Africa’s 2022 Year In Search Lists

Google today released its Year in Search results, which capture all of the information and questions South Africans sought out in 2022.

Google’s Year in Search is an annual analysis that reveals the top trending lists and spotlights what the world searches to see, learn and do. In a year characterised by increased loadshedding, a war in Ukraine, a football World Cup and deaths of a number of high profile South Africans, the public turned to Google for more information.

For the second year in a row, the top trending search term in South Africa related to social grants as South Africans sought to find out more about the R350 SASSA Social Relief (SRD) grant. Wordle, the online word game that captured the world’s attention, was the second most searched term, followed by climate change. Other top trending searches were related to the war in Ukraine, loadshedding, typhoid fever and monkeypox.

“The annual Year in Search results are a good example of Google’s commitment to organising the world’s information and making it universally accessible and useful, in action. This year’s results show that Google is a trusted source of information when South Africans are uncertain, sad, or looking for ways to learn more or entertain themselves,” says Dr Alistair Mokoena, Country Director for Google South Africa.

When it comes to the people South Africans searched, American rapper Jaden Smith topped the list, followed in second place by his father Will Smith who was searched alongside Chris Rock following the slapping incident at the Oscars. Johnny Depp and Amber Heard occupied third and fourth places after their protracted and public court case.

It was a sad year for music in South Africa, with a number of high profile deaths. Beloved rapper Riky Rick was the most searched loss. South Africans also turned to Google to find out more following the deaths of musicians Dj Sumbody, Takeoff and Dj Dimplez. 

Big Brother Mzansi was the most searched for TV show or movie in South Africa with the Addams Family adaptation, Wednesday, following in second place. Black Panther 2 and Wakanda Forever both feature in the top 10 trending searches for TV shows and movies.

It is no secret that South Africa is a sports loving nation and the 2022 Year in Search results encapsulate this perfectly. Football occupies the top three searches- with World Cup 2022 fixtures as the top trending sport search, followed by Afcon and South Africa’s women’s football team Banyana Banyana. The rest of the top 10 also features searches for tennis (Australian Open), Rugby (Springboks v All Blacks) and cricket (South Africa v India).

Curiosity remained high among citizens, with a variety of questions around climate change, current affairs and pop culture being searched. Some of these searches included ‘what is global warming’, ‘what is drought’, ‘who is the new Black Panther’ and ‘how to check matric results online’.

Here are the trending searches in 2022: 

Top searched lossesTop searched TV show/ movie
1. Riky Rick
2. Queen Elizabeth 2
3. Patrick Shai
4. DJ Sumbody
5. Takeoff
6. Pearl Shongwe
7. Kuli Roberts
8. DJ Dimplez
9. Shane Warne
10. Anne Heche
1. Big Brother Mzansi
2. Wednesday
3. Stranger Things
4. Tinder Swindler
5. Manifest
6. House of the Dragon
7. Black Panther 2
8. Black Adam
9. Purple Hearts
10. Wakanda Forever
Top searched sports termsTop trending ‘What is’ questions
1. World cup 2022 fixtures
3. Banyana Banyana
4. Australian open
5. Kaizer chiefs vs Amazulu
6. Springboks vs All Blacks
7. Uefa nations league
8. South africa vs India
9. Argentina vs Saudi Arabia
10. Mamelodi Sundowns vs Orlando Pirates
1. What is vabbing
2. What is global warming
3. What is Nato
4. What is the relationship between climate change and the regularity of droughts
5. What is monkeypox
6. What is methanol
7. What is drought
8. What is frontal
9. What is alopecia
10. What is NFT
Top trending ‘Who is’ questionsTop trending ‘How to’ questions
1. Who is Andrew Tate
2. Who is CEO of Netflix
3. Who is Jeffrey Dahmer
4. Who is playing in the Super Bowl 2022
5. Who is Amber Heard
6. Who is in the Super Bowl 2022
7. Who is The Watcher
8. Who is the new Black Panther
9. Who is running for president in 2024
10. Who is Julia Fox
1. How to check matric results online
2. How to check Sassa status
3. How to apply for R350 grant
4. How to vote on Big Brother Mzansi 2022
5. How to go live on Whatsapp
6. How to solve a rubik’s cube
7. How to cook
8. How to recover Facebook account
9. How to get rid of
10. How to help GBV victims
Top searched lyrics
1. Lift me up lyrics
2. Last last lyrics
3. Under the influence lyrics
4. Dali Nguwe lyrics
5. Osama lyrics
6. Smile in you senior oat lyrics
7. Jeke maan lyrics
8. God did lyrics
9. Rihanna lift me up lyrics
10. Rich flex lyrics

For more information on  Google’s Year in Search across the globe visit the Google’s trends site.