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Uncle Google is watching. What did Poles search for in 2023?

Kamila Brzezińska
Kamila Brzezińska

Editor

With 2023 firmly behind us, Google, the most popular research engine, has recently released its “Year in Search 2023” report. If you wish to uncover what topics captivated the curiosity of Polish internet users last year, check out our article.
Uncle Google is watching. What did Poles search for in 2023?

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Ask Uncle Google – the (only/already) 25-year-old oracle

In the times gone by, obtaining an answer to a difficult question was something of a troublesome endeavor.

In Ancient Greece, for example, one would have to take a frequently hundreds-kilometer hike to Delphi and hope that Apollo’s vapor doped oracle, Pythia, was in a talkative mood.

Nowadays we have Google – a virtual prophet available within the reach of our hand, and twenty-four hours seven a week, at that. Recently, this internet search engine has celebrated its twenty-five years “live”. Throughout this time, Google has become one of the most popular research tools in the world ­– with around 85% market share of desktop search engines worldwide, according to the data by Statista.

For many of us, Google has become a part of our everyday lives so familiar, that the term “Ask Uncle Google” was coined. And in many ways it is fitting – Google is like this one uncle who seems to somehow have an answer on anything, and whose opinion you implicitly trust, even though he’s not without his share of controversies. He is also an infinite source of videos of cats playing on the piano, so it’s a win-win situation.

All in all, Google’s widespread popularity can offer us insights into what topics were trending in a given period, and uncover what was on the collective mind of internauts in 2023.


GLOBAL TRENDS IN 2023 ­­­

Around the world, Google indicates that the below searches were the most popular in the following categories:

News

  • war in Israel and Gaza ­– an armed conflict between Hamas-led Palestinian militant groups and Israel, which has been ongoing since October 2023.
  • Titanic submarine – an implosion of “Titan” submarine near the wreckage of Titanic, in June 2023.
  • Turkey earthquake – a natural disaster in February 2023 that resulted in at least 50,000 deaths in Turkey and Syria.

Passing

  • Matthew Perry – an American actor best known for his role as Chandler in the sitcom “Friends”.
  • Tina Turner – a legendary US vocalist, best known for songs such as “Private dancer”, “What’s love got to do with it” or “Goldeneye”
  • Sinéad O'Connor – an Irish singer, in Poland probably known for her hit song “Nothing Compares 2 U”

TRENDS IN POLAND

When it comes to Poland, Google’s “Year in Search 2023” shows the below trends:

News

  • Elections 2023 – The parliamentary elections were the primary focus of news-oriented Poles in 2023. Trending buzzwords included the election results, the TVP debate, and related topics.
  • War in Israel and Gaza – same as globally, the conflict caught the attention of internet users in Poland.
  • Legionella – 2023 was a year plagued by legionella outbreaks in Poland. Thus, the internauts asked what legionella bacterium is and how it can be contracted.
  • 2023 FIFA Woman’s World Cup ­– The ninth edition of the tournament took place from 20 July to 20 August 2023, and gathered some interest among Polish Internauts.

Movies

  • “Oppenheimer” (2023)­– A fictionalized biography of Rober Oppenheimer, a scientist considered of be a father of the atomic bomb.
  • “Barbie” (2023) – Mattel’s first attempt at creating their Barbie Extended Universe. Also, bizarrely enough, a direct competitor of Oppenheimer, as both movies had their premieres on the same day, which resulted in the extremely “meme-able” phenomenon of “Barbieheimer”. Come for Margot Robbie’s Ordinary Barbie, stay for Ryan Gosling’s Just Ken.
  • Zielona granica (2023) – aka “The Green Boarder”, a Polish movie by A. Holland about the refugee situation on the Polish-Belarusian border.
  • Heaven in Hell (2023) ­– A Polish romance and spiritual successor of the rightfully infamous “365 days” trilogy.
  • Znachor (2023) – aka “Forgotten Love”, a Polish story about a famous surgeon who loses his memory and then becomes a village healer as his memories starts to resurface.

TV shows

  • ‘Wednesday” (2022-) ­– A dark high school comedy/drama the a perspective of a sociopathic but iconic Wednesday Addams, part of the infamous Addams family.
  • “The last of us” (2023-) – Based on the popular game of the same title, the TV series explores the development of the father-daughter dynamic between Joel and Ellie struggling to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. Many people hail it as the best screen adaptation of a videogame in history, but truth be told, the bar to achieve this title has never been set so high in the first place.
  • “Ginny & Georgia” (2021-) – This US production dives into the relationship of Georgia Miller, a thirty-year-old mother, and her fifteen-year-old daughter Ginny, and dares to ask the question: who is raising who here?
  • “Dom pod Dwoma Orłami” (2023-) ­– Loosely translated as “The House Under Two Eagles“ is a Polish family drama with the intriguing motto: “Każda rodzina ma swoja tajemnice” which means „Every family has its secrets”.
  • “Zakazany owoc” (2018-2023) – “Forbidden Apple” or in the original version: “Yasak Elma” is a Turkish soap opera which in Poland is aired on TVP2. It touches upon the ever-unrelatable but entertaining lives of social elites.

What is…

  • an implosion?
  • Hamas?
  • an annihilation?
  • Legionella?
  • Wagner’s group

Why…

  • Why you shouldn’t participate in the referendum?
  • Why is Shopee closing down?
  • Why is there no fuel?
  • Why isn’t Kurek playing?
  • Why isn’t Kubacki jumping today?

How much for...a camel and a capybara? Seriously?

  • A lumberjack?
  • A camel?
  • Copper?
  • An iPhone 15?
  • A capybara?

How (much, many, long, old)… From mosquito slaughter penalties to counting animal body parts.

  • How long is the prison sentence for killing a mosquito?
  • How old is Pamela Anderson?
  • How many knees does a dog have?
  • How old is King Charles III?
  • How many udders does a cow have?

If you liked this article, you might also enjoy:

The Christmas Kevin Craze – The unprecedented popularity of „Home Alone” in Poland


Sources:

Blog Google – Rok w wyszukiwarce: od wyborów do marszałka sejmu, od Oppenheimera do Znachora, od Beyoncé po memy „bejba”

Statista ­– Market share of leading desktop search engines worldwide from January 2015 to July 2023

Year in Search 2023 – Poland

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