The global star’s name was missing from Google’s annual “Year In Search” roundup
Every December, Google reveals a list of the year’s most popular search terms — reflecting top-trending queries on news events to historic cinematic showdowns (Barbenheimer) to musicians. This year, however, Taylor Swift — whose record-breaking Eras Tour and re-recordings have dominated 2023 — did not make the roll call.
Although Swift, who has can been name-dropped by everyone from Time (see: Person of the Year) to the Grammys, wasn’t on the tech-giant’s global round up, her beau was. Travis Kelce of the Kansas City Chiefs featured on both the top five most searched athletes and the most searched people.
And while Shakira topped the most searched musicians globally, followed by “Try That In a Small Town” country singer Jason Aldean and Swift’s ex-lover Joe Jonas, the “Anti-Hero” singer was nowhere to be found.
Yet, as Gizmodo first pointed out, Swift surpassed Aldean every day of 2023, except for July 16 to July 22 — when “Try That in a Small Town” drew backlash for its controversial video. Swift drew more searches than Shakira as well, not counting the brief moment the Columbian singer swooped the No. 1 spot in January after unleashing her viral song blasting soccer player Gerard Piqué following their split.
While there appears to be a disconnect between data showing Swift’s overwhelming search-term popularity and Google’s annual list, a spokesperson for the company says there’s a simple explanation. Basically, Swift’s name, like the “Weather” and “Cricket,” is such a common search term (at least compared to 2022) it doesn’t warrant a gold sticker for this year’s trends.
“Top trending lists make for more colorful and interesting data pulls and are generally better at identifying what people were curious about in 2023 relative to 2022,” Google spokesperson Colette Garcia told Gizmodo. “The ‘trending’ queries are the searches that had a high spike in traffic over a sustained period in 2023 as compared to 2022. Taylor Swift is someone who consistently has a high amount of Search interest, not someone who had a big spike in 2023 as compared to 2022.”