What Malaysians Googled in 2014

By Patricia Hului


The year which started with ‘kangkung’ has finally ended.

2014 became the year of the Ice Bucket Challenge, Pharell’s viral ‘Happy’ song and #CDM25 here in Malaysia. It was also a year of tragic losses for our country with three airline tragedies darkening our thoughts.

Adding insult to injury was Bomoh Ibrahim Mat Zin performing rituals with his assistants at Kuala Lumpur International Airport following the disappearance of MH370 armed with two coconuts, a basket, a magic walking stick and a carpet. The self-proclaimed Raja Bomoh Sedunia Nujum VIP had also performed another ritual with a traditional fish trap and bamboo ‘binoculars’.

Facebook invited us to review our year through applications such as Times or ‘Year in Review’, the latter which suffered negative backlash from Facebook users, most notably grieving father Eric Meyer, who regretted in his blog that the application compiled photos of his daughter who died of brain cancer on her sixth birthday.

Through Google Trends; a public web facility that shows how often a particular search-term is entered relative to the total search volume across regions of the world, we can see what Malaysians Googled in 2014.


Trending Searches
1. MH370
2. World Cup 2014
3. MH17
4. Astro Awani
5. Perodua Axia
6. SPS
7. BR1M
8. Street View
9. Malindo Air
10. Rindu Awak 200%

As expected, the most searched topic in 2014 was the mysterious disappearance of MH370.

MH370, a scheduled international passenger flight, disappeared on Mar 8 while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. The aircraft was carrying 12 Malaysian crew members and 227 passengers from 15 nations.

On March 24, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced that MH370 was assumed lost with no survivors and that all evidence suggested plane went down in the Southern Indian Ocean.

The underwater search is still ongoing and it is expected to be completed around May 2015.

Picking up the second spot was the world-class sport event that only happens once in four years: World Cup 2014. Hosted by Brazil, the World Cup began on June 12 and concluded July 13. In the end, Germany took the crown after beating Argentina 1-0.

The third trending search was MH17, another MAS passenger flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur which which went down on July 17 in rebellion-torn eastern Ukraine.

The tragedy took the lives of 283 passengers and the 15 crew on board including Sarawakian family of six, Tambi Jiee with his wife and four children aged 13 to 19 and an offshore worker named Meling Mula from Bintulu.



SOLEMN: The arrival of the remains of victims Ariza Ghazalee, 46, and son Muhammad Afif, 19, at the Royal Malaysian Air Force base here on Aug 22, 2014.


Trending People Searches
1. Karpal Singh
2. Robin Williams
3. Jennifer Lawrence
4. Felixia Yeap
5. Hanez Suraya
6. Luna Maya
7. Michael Schumacher
8. Dyana Sofya
9. Keith Foo
10. Juan Mata

In the song If I Die Young by The Band Perry, there is a line saying ‘Funny when you’re dead how people start listening’.

Same goes with the most searched people where the death of a prominent Malaysia lawyer and suicide of a famous Hollywood actor did make people Google about them.

On top of the list Malaysians most searched person this year was the late Karpal Singh. On 17 April, the prominent lawyer perished in a car crash.

Another tragedy that took the second spot was the death of American actor and comedian Robin Williams. Williams was known for movies such as Dead Poets Society, Hook, Jumanji and Night at the Museum.

He was found dead on Aug 11 at his home. The cause of death was ruled out as suicide.

Why did people search for Jennifer Lawrence? Perhaps because The Hunger Games ‘Mockingjay – Part 1’ was released in Malaysia on Nov 20. Perhaps because on Merdeka Day, nude photos of her were leaked online by hackers 4Chan.

Whatever the reasons were, Lawrence was the third most searched person by Malaysians beating Malaysia’s first playboy bunny-turned-Muslim devotee Felixia Yeap at fourth place and Malaysian actress Hanez Suraya who was caught in an affair with a married man at fifth spot.


Trending Movies
1. Annabelle
2. Frozen
3. Interstellar
4. Maleficent
5. Godzilla
6. The Maze Runner
7. Dracula Untold
8. Big Hero 6
9. Lucy
10. Robocop

Malaysians love horror movies. It is so easy to tell because in 2013 the most trending movie was ‘The Conjuring’.

In 2014, The Conjuring’s prequel and spin-off movie called Annabelle became the most trending movie.

‘Annabelle’ follows the story of a doll of the same name which is believed to be possessed.

Released worldwide on Oct 3, the film received negative reviews but still being dubbed one of the highest grossing horror films of all time grossing over $252 million against its $6.5 million production budget.


Trending Malaysian Movies
1. The Journey
2. Abang Long Fadil
3. Balisti
4. Pengantin Malam
5. Kami Histeria
6. Sejoli
7. Papodom 2
8. Zombi Kilang Biskut
9. Mat Tudung
10. Hantu Tok Mudin

Standing on top of the list for most trending Malaysian movies was ‘The Journey’.


TOUCHING AND RELATABLE: 'The Journey' which was released for the Chinese New Year celebrations last year struck a chord in many Malaysians.

TOUCHING AND RELATABLE: ‘The Journey’ which was released for the Chinese New Year celebrations last year struck a chord in many Malaysians.


Malaysian director Chiu Keng Guan explored the idea of culture in ‘The Journey’ which revolves around the relationship of widower father, Uncle Chuan (Lee Sai Peng) and daughter, Ah Bee (Joanne Yew Hong Im) struggling to rebuild their relationship, broken due to distance, lack of understanding and cultural differences.

The mainly Chinese movie has a heart-warming storyline closes to our hearts that it was not surprise many Malaysians could identify with it.

Other lists include Trending TV Series, Trending World Cup Matches, Sports Personalities, Shopping Sites, News Sites, Car Models, Malaysian Celebs and Mobile Searches.

The year ended with more sad news with the worst floods in Malaysia along Peninsular Malaysia’s east coast and Airasia flight QZ8501 found crashed in the Java Sea on Dec 30.

Let us all hope and pray 2015 will be a good year that only success and heart-warming stories will be Googled this year.

Read ‘What Malaysians Googled in 2013’ to compare and reminisce about the year 2013 at http://seeds.theborneopost.com/2014/01/01/what-malaysians-googled-in-2013/.

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