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OK, Google: What were Canadians’ top search terms in 2017?

Everything from Harvey Weinstein to Bitcoin made the list
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What a country searches for online in a given year says a lot about what was in the news, but also about where a society’s interests lie.

So where did Canadians’ interest lie in 2017? Some popular searches were to be expected (Harvey Weinstein, the Super Bowl, Donald Trump) and others, well, not so much (We’re looking at you, “Why doesn't Caillou have hair?”)

Top 10

Hurricane Irma, the powerful storm that slammed into the Caribbean and the U.S. in September, topped the list. Second, oddly maybe, was Meghan Markle, the woman Prince Harry wants to turn into England’s newest princess.

Tom Petty, the iconic musician whose on again, off again death confused the internet for a day or two in October, was the third most searched term in Canada last year. Curiosity about the NHL team pushed the Ottawa Senators into the fourth most searched term in 2017.

Unsurprisingly, the hermit kingdom of North Korea and its young, all-powerful dictator, Kim Jong-un, was the fifth most searched term. The world is fascinated and likely a little frightened of the totalitarian Communist leader, especially after he spent the year boasting about and then testing various nuclear bombs and intercontinental ballistic missile designs.

Chris Cornell, the celebrated singer of 1990s grunge royalty band Soundgarden, was the sixth most searched term of the year, after his untimely passing on May 18, 2017.

The popular but controversial teen suicide drama 13 Reasons Why that began airing at the end of March 2017, was the seventh most searched term of the year. The show, which chronicled the suicide of a teen girl and the aftermath of her suicide through a series of audio recordings the girl made before her suicide, prompted warnings from school boards and some psychologists that it could trigger a rash of copycat suicides. 

There’s no word on if the suicide rate jumped as a result of the show, but there was certainly a spike in people searching “how to commit suicide,” “how to kill yourself” and similar terms. A second season of 13 Reasons Why is set to air this year.

Ah, the fidget spinner. The product that takes the cake for just about the dumbest craze to sweep North America since the pet rock. What do you do with a fidget spinner? Well, you spin it. That’s about it. And like the pet rock, the fidget spinner exploded onto the scene, only to fizzle out unceremoniously a few months later. It’s still came in at No. 8 on the top search terms of 2017.

Coming in at No. 9 on our list is the iPhone 8m which was released officially for sale on Sept. 22, 2017. There’s really not much else to say about it. It’s a smartphone, after all. One that a lot of people were curious about, apparently.

And finally, the 10th most searched term in Canada last year: Super Bowl. We’re pretty sure this makes the list most years. A lot of people watched the game, like more than 100 million viewers. The New England Patriots of the American Football Conference defeated the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football Conference by a score of 34-28. Presumably, someone went to Disney World afterwards.

The top 10 out of the way, here’s more highlights from Google searches for 2017. Enjoy

Canadian News

1) Ottawa Senators
2) Gord Downie
3) Solar Eclipse
4) BC Election
5) The Weather
6) Ontario College Strike
7) BC Wildfires
8) Grey Cup
9) Invictus Games
10) Instant Pot

People

1) Harvey Weinstein
2) Matt Lauer
3) Kevin Spacey
4) Éric Salvail
5) Melania Trump
6) Gal Gadot
7) Louis CK
8) Floyd Mayweather
9) Ed Sheeran
10) Omar Khadr

International News

1) Hurricane Irma
2) North Korea
3) Trump News
4) Bitcoin
5) Solar Eclipse
6) Las Vegas Shooting
7) Hurricane Jose
8) Manchester Arena Bombing
9) Charlottesville
10) April the Giraffe

TV Shows

1) 13 Reasons Why
2) Game of Thrones
3) Riverdale
4) Iron Fist
5) Santa Clarity Diet
6) Stranger Things
7) The OA
8) This Is Us
9) The Handmaid's Tale
10) Big Mouth

Movies

1) It
2) Wonder Woman
3) Beauty and The Beast
4) Justice League
5) Dunkirk
6) Logan
7) Guardians of the Galaxy 2
8) Blade Runner 2049
9) Get Out
10) Thor Ragnarok

Losses

1) Tom Petty
2) Chris Cornell
3) Bill Paxton
4) Gord Downie
5) Chester Bennington
6) Hugh Hefner
7) Roy Halladay
8) Lil Peep
9) David Cassidy
10) Aaron Hernandez

Musicians

1) Neil Young
2) Ed Sheeran
3) Shania Twain
4) Ariana Grande
5) Lil Pump
6) Cardi B
7) Luis Fonsi
8) Jason Aldean
9) Aaron Carter
10) Sam Smith

Political Figures

1) Donald Trump
2) Andrew Scheer
3) Jagmeet Singh
4) Roy Moore
5) Emmanuel Macron
6) John McCain
7) Julie Payette
8) Betsy DeVos
9) Valérie Plante
10) Christie Clarke

Memes

1) Cash Me Outside Memes
2) United Airlines Memes
3) Donald Trump Memes
4) Joe Biden Memes
5) It (The Movie) Memes
6) Game of Thrones Memes
7) Stranger Things Memes
8) Salt Bae Memes
9) Tom Brady Memes
10) May The 4th Memes

How...

1) How do they name hurricanes
2) How many teaspoons are in a tablespoon
3) How soon should you take a pregnancy test
4) How to make solar eclipse glasses
5) How to buy bitcoin in Canada
6) How to renew a Canadian passport
7) How to make slime
8) How often should you wash your hair
9) How much does it cost to build a house
10) How to help someone with depression

Why...

1) Why are NFL players protesting the national anthem
2) Why are flags in Canada at half mast
3) Why are there so many hurricanes
4) Why are women marching
5) Why does Catalonia want independence
6) Why is the solar eclipse dangerous to look at
7) Why are fidget spinners so popular
8) Why doesn't Caillou have hair
9) Why is everything so heavy
10) Why is Canadian thanksgiving different than US thanksgiving