Support The Moscow Times!

Google Names Russia's Top Search Queries of 2014

The ruble, which plunged into a dramatic free fall this week, was late to the party and so not included on the Russian list.

Forget wars and money: The Sochi Olympics topped the list of this year's top-trending searches in Russia published by Google.

Entertainment featured prominently, too: The runner-up was Zhanna Friske, a best-selling Russian pop star currently battling cancer who made headlines over the controversial fund-raising effort to help her.

Slots three, six and seven went to Russian television series, with No. 3 being "Fizruk" ("P.E. Teacher"), a comedic tale of a Russian mafioso who takes up a job as a school gym teacher.

"Eurovision 2014" ranked in fourth place: The contest is a perennial Russian favorite, and the controversy generated by the winner, Austrian drag queen Conchita Wurst, certainly helped as well.

Crimea, the Ukrainian peninsula annexed by Russia in March, much to the West's displeasure, was only the fifth most popular search in 2014.

"Ukraine news" ranked in the ninth slot, showing that Russians' interest in the pro-Russian insurgency in eastern Ukraine was perhaps not as great as commonly thought.

Another Western agent, the iPhone 6, made it into the top 10 but came in last place.

On related searches, Friske topped the "trending people" list. "[How to] paint eggs" scored as the lifehack of the year, reflecting Russia's ubiquitous Easter custom (the eggs are real, and they are colored and eaten — not hidden).

The ruble, which plunged into a dramatic free fall this week, was late to the party and so not included on the Russian list.

Of the global top three — (the late) Robin Williams, World Cup and Ebola — none had enough interest in Russia for the top 10.

The rest of the world cared more about Crimea and Ukraine than their Russian neighbors: The two combined scored as the fourth most popular query for global news.

The interest in Ukraine was outmatched only by Ebola and ISIS, as well as Malaysia Airlines, which lost two planes this year, one vanishing mysteriously and another shot down over a rebel-held area in Ukraine.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

As the only remaining independent, English-language news source reporting from Russia, The Moscow Times plays a critical role in connecting Russia to the world.

Editorial decisions are made entirely by journalists in our newsroom, who adhere to the highest ethical standards. We fearlessly cover issues that are often considered off-limits or taboo in Russia, from domestic violence and LGBT issues to the climate crisis and a secretive nuclear blast that exposed unknowing doctors to radiation.

Please consider making a one-time donation — or better still a recurring donation — to The Moscow Times to help us continue producing vital, high-quality journalism about the world's largest country.