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Google searches for "Swine Flu" drop

Original post made by GoogleWatch, News on Mountain View's largest employer, on May 5, 2009

Fewer people are typing the words "swine flu" into the Google search engine in recent days, indicating that the hysteria over swine flu is simmering.
According to Google's [Web Link Insights for Search tool], search volume for the keywords "swine flu" peaked on April 30 and has been declining ever since.
Swine flu is unusual in that the flu's name is well known. But Google says it has figured out which search terms people are likely to use when concerned about the flu in general, and launched [Web Link Google Flu Trends] in November as a way to estimate flu activity in real time.
Google claims that flu-related web searches have a close relationship with how many people actually have the flu, and that Google Flu Trends has predicted flu outbreaks weeks before government officials have.
Last week, Google released [Web Link Flu Trends for Mexico] after requests from government officials, according to [Web Link Google's philanthropy blog].
Flu related search volume is currently "low" for Mexico and the US, and only increased to "moderate" levels in Mexico over the last few weeks.


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