Sci & Tech

Internet Trends in Jan.

Internet Trends in Jan.
Internet Trends in Jan.

Things have changed in Iran, with a sportsman and higher education rising to the top of the local Internet charts via Google's analytics service.

The leading breakout term for the Iranian month of Dey (Dec. 22-Jan. 20) is Sosha Makani, a well-known Persepolis goalkeeper who had his private messages leaked out into the social media stratosphere. Last month's leading search result stems from photos depicting the sports personality in a somewhat compromising light.

Searches for Makani peaked on Jan. 4-5, with the northern provinces of Mazandaran and Golestan searching for the footballer most.

Higher education also made a prominent appearance again after the rise in queries about tertiary education pushes it further up the charts, but don't forget those DVD-only TV shows that Iranians buy in their local corner stores.

As ever, education was at the top of Iranian agendas. As a result, the next most sought after topic online in Iran through the previous Iranian month was "Samaneh SAJAD" written in Persian script. Literally translated as "education research application", the important online application form is mostly used by potential university students.

This search also comes in third place with a 250% increase, but with the acronym "SAJAD" written on its own.

In fourth place was "Elmi Karbordi" or otherwise known in English as the University of Applied Sciences and Technology. Like the two previous entries, this university is part of Iran's higher education sector with a search increase of 120% over the corresponding 30 days. The southwestern city of Bandar Ganaveh followed by the northeastern province of North Khorasan registered the largest number of searches.

In fifth place was "Tamin Ejtemaei" meaning Social Security Organization in English, an unusual spot for a state organ, as not many people use their online services. One reason for the peak in searches could be a recent statement by the government to push registered taxi drivers to sign up for national insurance.

The largest social insurer offers a partial insurance to many while also offering the poorest in need free medical care at the government expense. The leading province searching for the social welfare body was the northwestern city of Ardabil and the leading city was Shahr-e Kord in the east of the country.  

The next most searched term was "Daneshgah Azad" or "Free University" in English, but commonly referred to as Azad University. Searches for this university steadily rose through the month with the peak of searches coming in on Jan 19.

Lorestan Province led the searches for the tertiary-level education provider, with Bandar Abbas in the south of the country searching most, followed by southwestern city Khorramabad following closely behind.

Well-loved DVD-only television soap opera Shahrzad remains in the top ten and was placed seventh. According to Al-Monitor recently, Shahrzad is centered on a love story between two university students narrated in a historical setting.

The story takes place in the early 1950s, amid one of the most important events in the Middle East at that time: the nationalization of Iran’s oil industry. The Aug. 19, 1953, coup d’etat that ousted then-prime minister Mohammad Mosaddeq is also highlighted, raising additional interest among Iranians.

At number eight was "Estekhdami" or "hiring' in English, basically meaning many of Iran's graduates are looking to enter the working world and are now using online searches for positions. The leading search term via Google is

Searches for "hiring" were constant through the past 30-day period with peaks and troughs appearing throughout the month consecutively. The province leading searches for jobs was South Khorasan followed by southern Sistan-Baluchestan province where unemployment levels are higher than the national average.

Another TV show that led to the ninth and tenth most hits was “Serial Kimiya” written in Persian, which depicts the upheavals faced by a family living in southern Iran before, during and after the revolution. Events revolving around the protagonist, Kimiya, have captured the imaginations of Iranians during the 100-episode series. Gilan followed by neighboring Mazandaran provinces led the search for this term.