Hitwise Examines UK Election InterestBy: Doug Caverly - November 4, 2008
If the importance of this presidential election has you feeling anxious, fresh stats from Hitwise may not help much. Essentially, they act as a reminder that the world’s watching, and UK residents in particular seem to be interested in a couple of political figures.
There’s been a high volume of searches for Barack Obama since (at least) late last year. Only on a few occasions have searches for the UK’s own prime minister, Gordon Brown, become more common. Meanwhile, interest in Joe Biden has remained quite low even after his nomination.
UK Searchers Focused On US Candidates
Then, to switch to the other side of the aisle, Sarah Palin has caused some rather huge search spikes. Interest in John McCain has been more steady, putting him on a level similar to Brown’s.
It’s probably time for a reminder from Robin Goad, though. The Hitwise UK Research Director writes, "Internet searches don’t equal votes – particularly if the people doing the searching live in another country and therefore aren’t entitled to vote in the election!" And search stats don’t always reflect popularity, either, so higher lines may not represent the UK’s endorsement.
One last note: however this election turns out, it looks like Wikipedia will walk away a victor, as a great many of these political searches are leading individuals straight to its site.