Weekly pattern for online information seeking on HIV - a multi-language study

Elia Gabarron*, Annie Y. S. Lau, Rolf Wynn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
23 Downloads (Pure)


Studies have demonstrated that there are weekly patterns of information-seeking activities on sexual health topics in some selected languages. However, it is not known if this weekly pattern is found across the ten most commonly-used languages on the Internet, and whether international public events might have an impact on these information-seeking patterns. The objective of this study is to examine sexual health information-seeking patterns for searches performed in several languages, and also to analyze the potential impact of public events on these information-seeking rates. We extracted the number of hits on the HIV article on Wikipedia for the ten most used languages on the Internet for all of the year 2015. The results confirm the existence of a weekly pattern for the searches performed in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese, Russian, French, and German. But the weekly pattern was not found for searches in Mandarin Chinese, Arabic, and Malay. The number of HIV queries increased significantly during two public events, the World AIDS Day, and the announcement regarding the HIV-positive condition of the celebrity actor Charlie Sheen. The existence of higher peaks in searching rates at the beginning of the week for some languages, and the increase in queries related to public events could represent valuable opportunities for public campaigns promoting sexual health.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationExploring complexity in health
Subtitle of host publicationan interdisciplinary systems approach
EditorsAlexander Hoerbst, Werner O. Hackl, Nicolette de Keizer, Hans-Ulrich Prokosch, Mira Hercigonja-Szekeres, Simon de Lusignan
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
PublisherIOS Press
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781614996781
ISBN (Print)9781614996774
Publication statusPublished - 2016
EventMedical Informatics Europe (MIE) Conference at Conference on Health - Exploring Complexity (HEC) - An Interdisciplinary Systems Approach - Munich, Germany
Duration: 28 Aug 20162 Sep 2016

Publication series

NameStudies in Health Technology and Informatics
PublisherIOS PRESS
ISSN (Print)0926-9630


ConferenceMedical Informatics Europe (MIE) Conference at Conference on Health - Exploring Complexity (HEC) - An Interdisciplinary Systems Approach

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Publisher 2016. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • health information-seeking behavior
  • periodicity
  • Wikipedia
  • HIV
  • internet

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