Popular searches in google and yahoo! A "digital divide" in information uses?

Elad Segev*, Niv Ahituv

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


In this article, the authors analyze the popular search queries used in Google and Yahoo! over a 24-month period, January 2004-December 2005. They develop and employ a new methodology and metrics to examine and assess the digital divide in information uses, looking at the extent of political searches and their accuracy and variety. The findings indicate that some countries, particularly Germany, Russia, and Ireland, display greater accuracy of search terms, diversity of information uses, and sociopolitical concern. Also, in many English-speaking and Western countries most popular searches were about entertainment, implying a certain gap within these countries between the few who search for economic and political information and the many who do not.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17-37
Number of pages21
JournalInformation Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Classification of search queries
  • Digital divide
  • Entertainment searches
  • Google zeitgeist
  • Internet search
  • Online information uses
  • Political and economic searches
  • Yahoo! Buzz


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