Guptas, sports and Brussels – The biggest Google searches in SA for March

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As March draws to a close, Google has revealed what South Africans searched for throughout the month and the results are both unsurprising and strange, as always.

The top search of the month was for “Caroline Herschel” who would have celebrated her 266th birthday this year. According to the search engine, putting the astronomer as the Google Doodle on her birthday (16th March) may have caused her to jump the ranks.

Grabbing the number two spot for March was International Women’s Day which took place on 8th March. Throughout the day South African’s searched for “International Women’s Day”, “Women’s Day 2016”, and “International Women’s Day themes”.

Revelations from Deputy Finance Minister, Mcebisi Jonas that the Gupta brothers had offered him the position of Finance Minister while former Minister, Nhlanhla Nene was still in the position.

Aside from a rather amusing hashtag that was created around the debacle, South African’s searched Google for more using the terms, “Gupta”, “Jacob Zuma”, “Barbara Hogan” (who also accused the Gupta brothers of state capture) and “ANC”.

Of course, the trouble with Maria Sharapova and alleged doping garnered a fair number of searches while local sport in the form of “Orlando Pirates”, “Nedbank Cup” and “Pirates” being searched for in Google.

You might be wondering why these terms all use multiple phrases and that is because Google groups trending themes into trend clusters, this makes it easier to see, at a glance what searches are currently popular.

Other popular searches for the month include Kim Kardashian and the selfie that set the internet alight, Saint Patrick’s Day and Cricket World Cup 2016.

The recent terror attacks in Brussels also caught the attention of South Africans with 17 trend clustered terms being generated including, “Brussels bombing”, “Brussels airport bomb” and “ISIS”.

While these aren’t the most exhilarating searches, they are better than the results we got last year.

Yes, we haven’t forgotten you all searched “what is shrub” enough times to make it a top “how to” search for the year, we will never forget.

[Source – Google] [Image – SA BY/2.0 Eduardo Woo]

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz

Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.