The best searches money can buy
Russell Degnan

(via Marginal Revolution) Google has a new toy, showing trends in news and searches. Fun, fun. Neither searches nor news are necessarily related to importance, and common terms will dominate, but I am sure this could be useful for something.

And tourism could be one of those things. Because searches indicate interest. With that in mind, here are Australia's major cities

On the news front, Sydney got good press during the Athens Olympics, and bad press in December 2005. Melbourne got a jump during the tennis, the grand prix, and this year, from the Commonwealth Games (albeit less than from the Australian Open).

But in the searches, it is mostly noise, with Sydney well ahead but for one brief period a year.

And what event is it that, more than anything else, puts Melbourne's name on the google search map?

If searches mean anything, than nothing else comes close to the Melbourne Cup.

The linked search there shows three other interesting trends (assuming the data is broadly accurate, which is not necessarily true):

- "Australia" is declining as a search term
- "Australia" is increasing as a news term
- After New Zealand, Singapore and India are the main origins of Australian searches

Update: After more playing, it becomes obvious that pretty much any sporting event known to man will have a flood of Australian searches for it. Particularly from Perth and Brisbane. But the Australian city most interested in "Ashes cricket"...

...Canberra. Ah, this is fun.

Passing Fancy 11th May, 2006 23:12:09   [#] 

Comments

Searching for...
I am addicted to searching and love looking up films, quotes, poems, fashion, music, artists...
BridgeGirl  12th May, 2006 09:28:55  

Is the scale linear or logarithmic?
It's hard to interpret that graph, except as ordinal data, without some sense of the scale. Does Sydney get five times as many searches, or maybe 50% more?
Rob  12th May, 2006 19:16:00  

No idea
You ask a good question Robert, and I don't know. I am guessing linear, based on other searches I did (celebrity fame whores is a great source of entertainment), but who knows.
Russ  12th May, 2006 20:31:49