Cost obsessions around the world

Discussion in 'Business & Economics' started by Plazma Inferno!, Aug 2, 2016.

  1. Plazma Inferno! Ding Ding Ding Ding Administrator

    Google’s autocomplete function provides suggestions derived from common Google searches by other users. Comparing autocomplete results for searches on different countries reveals how certain places are perceived by people around the World.
    It turns out that Google searches for the cost of something vary widely depending on the country of interest. For example, people are most interested in the cost of a passport or a patent in North America. As for Europe, many are concerned about practical things like the cost of living, studying, or buying a beer. Google users are interested in basic necessities such as food, livestock, and fuel in Africa. But if you look closely, you will find some more controversial search results, such as prostitution in Brazil, Ukraine, Hong Kong, and Latvia; slaves in Mauritania; a kidney in Iran; in vitro fertilization in Australia; and rhinoplasty in Korea.
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  3. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    The survey seems to confuse inquiries about a country with inquiries from a country's own residents. I'm not convinced that it's the Mauritanians themselves who are inquiring about the cost of a slave in Mauritania, or the Brazilians who are interested in - but not already familiar with - the local prices of hookers.

    And as far as autofilling "patent" in for the US, I have money to bet that the cost of a patent is not the single most frequent cost inquiry by Americans using Google. There's some kind of artifact involved - maybe what they have discovered is not interest but a particular state of ignorance, the phrasing of the inquiry being such as would be used by someone unfamiliar with even the basics of the subject or local situation.

    I don't imagine very many people in the US (or out of it) would ask "What does a car cost in the United States", for example. They would want to know what four wheel drive pickups are selling for in the various car lots within fifty miles, or the rental prices at the airports they are flying into.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2016
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