Every day, around the world, we search. We want to find out more about our heroes, explore far-away destinations, or settle a dinner table dispute between friends. And sometimes we just search to find out if eating ‘waakye’ is a good dieting option.

Zeitgeist — German for “spirit of the times” — is Google’s yearly look at the billions of searches performed throughout the year. Google’s Year-End Zeitgeist uses data from multiple sources while filtering out spam and repeat queries, to build fascinating top-ten lists across pop culture, sports, music, politics, news, and more.

This year, we reflect on the people, places, moments and topics that sent Ghanaians searching for answers.

Topping the list of top trending people in Ghana for 2013 is the late movie star Paul Walker, star of the fast and the furious movie franchise who died only a few weeks ago. Although an American actor, the large amount of Paul Walker-related queries following his death demonstrates his star power even in Ghana. Other notable individuals also on the list include 2013 Big Brother Africa contestant, the late Goldie Harvey, Rachel Appoh made famous by the infamous Vickileaks tape , Pope Francis and the leader of the Shatta movement Shatta Wale, amongst others.

In 2013 the top trending events list reflects Ghanaians’ love for football with with the #1 trending terms being AFCON 2013. Other events in 2013 that Ghanaians searched for were Miss World 2013, Margaret Thatcher’s death and the birth of the newest member of the british royal family, Prince George amongst others.

2013 could also be said to be the year of hiplife and Afropop, with the top 10 most searched for musicians all coming from the hiplife and Afropop genre. Occupying the #1 top trending Ghanaian musician position is the fastest rapper in Ghana Sarkodie. He beat EL, Shatta Wale, R2bees and Guru to retain the title as the most popular musician of Ghana. Also featured on the list are Samini, Kwabena Kwabena, Edem Efya and Fuse ODG.

There weren’t much surprises in the top trending Ghallywood celebs with Nadia Buari, Yvonne Nelson and Jackie Appiah at the top with the first three 3 positions.

Jackie Appiah came in at third
Jackie Appiah came in at third

In the sport category, Chelsea, Arsenal and Barcelona remained the top 3 most searched football clubs. For the first time, the Ghanaian Black Stars featured on the top 10 most searched football teams list, coming #7 ahead of AC Milan.

Other Ghanaian-specific lists include Top 10 most searched cars, Top 10 Most searched Mobile Gadgets and Phones, Top 10 “How tos…”, and Top 10 “What is…”.

Globally, the #1 trending search of 2013 was an international symbol of strength and peace: Nelson Mandela. Global search interest in the former President of South Africa was already high this year, and after his passing, people from around the world turned to Google to learn more about Madiba and his legacy.



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