On Wednesday, Google published its "Year in Search" for 2021, an annual series of lists showing the most trending keywords of the past year per country.
The most popular search term on Google in Belgium last year was "Euro 2021," last year's postponed European football Championship that was officially called "UEFA Euro 2020." The country's national "Jupiler Pro League" football compitition, the Tour de France and the athletes competing in the Olympic Games were also among the most searched for topics.
With constantly-updated infection figures and ever-changing measures, the coronavirus is never far away either: people googled the 'QVAX' reserve list for vaccines, wanted more info on how the 'Covid Safe Ticket' works and searched for a 'vaccination centre' in their area as well as 'MyHealthViewer' to access their personal medical data.
The most-googled person in Belgium last year was Jurgen Conings, the extremist-rightwing career soldier who threatened virologist Marc Van Ranst and was found dead in June after a month-long manhunt.
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The Dutch crime reporter Peter R. de Vries, who was murdered in Amsterdam in July, was the most searched for international personality in Belgium.
The top three of most googled Belgian politicians were Prime Minister Alexander De Croo, Federal Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke and Interior Minister Annelies Verlinden.
Among Belgian athletes, gymnast and Olympic gold medalist Nina Derwael is at the top of the list, followed by cyclist Wout van Aert and two-time Olympic gold medalist for the heptathlon Nafi Thiam.
Additionally, the question "what is a puppy mill?" ("wat is een broodfokker?" in Dutch) was at the top of the list of how/what questions in Belgium, followed by "what is woke" and what is pfos."
The top 10 most googled terms in Belgium:
1. Euro 2021
2. Jupiler Pro League
3. The weather tomorrow
4. Roland Garros
6. Covid Safe Ticket
9. Eurovision 2021
10. Jurgen Conings
Most-searched for questions in Belgium:
1. What is a puppy mill?
2. What is woke?
3. What is PFOS?
4. What is gay bashing?
5. What is an antigen test?
6. Cenosillicaphobia, what is that?
7. What is a racist?
8. What is bitcoin?
9. What is a PCR test?
10. What is itsme?
Like other years, the company also created a video to recap the year:
A complete overview of the most googled terms in Belgium (and other countries) can be found here.