For sure, the virus has “changed the way we Internet“, but has Covid-19 also been the most discussed topic ever in the whole history of web and social media? 🤔
Most Discussed Topics Online vs Covid-19
We know that Covid-19 did have an effect on web traffic, but that doesn’t necessarily correlate to discussions *about* the epidemic. During a webinar about Social Intelligence and Covid-19, I was recently asked whether Covid-19 has been the most discussed topic online ever. “Unprecedented” was definitely the answer that immediately popped in my mind, but I wanted to give a more factual benchmark against recent events and trends as discussed online. So I searched on Digimind for the peak of mentions of these highly discussed topics in 2019 and first half of 2020:
🌳🔥 Amazonian rainforest wildfires: 17M
⛪️🔥 Notre-Dame fire: 21M
🐨🔥 Australian wildfires: 39M
✊♻️ #ClimateStrike movement (combined with Greta Thunberg’s UN speech): 60M
✊🏿✊🏾 #BlackLivesMatter movement: 107M
🇺🇸🇺🇦 Trump-Ukraine scandal / impeachment process initiated: 129M
🦠😷 Covid-19: 750M
Cumulative vs. Peak Conversations
Even some highly discussed topics like Trump (100M monthly mentions on average) or Climate Change (35M monthly mentions on average) look small in comparison to the Covid-19 peak in mentions! That being said, after a few months the volume is quickly decreasing as Covid-19 now becomes part of the new normal. In cumulative volumes however, Trump has accumulated more than 2.4B mentions since 2019 whereas Covid-19 is “just” at 1.9B.
So, to answer the initial question, will Covid-19 be the most discussed topic over time? Probably not. But as a peak? Definitely.
Want to learn more about Social Media & Web Insights in the age of Covid-19? Check out our dedicated Covid-19 Resource Center or download our latest Industry Report: