October Curiosity Report
Posted in: The Curiosity Report
Facebook Log-in, Winter Weather Home Woes and Office Equipment Top October Queries on JustAnswer
It’s that time again: the monthly JustAnswer Curiosity Report looking at patterns in the question data from the previous month, and October revealed a few interesting - and dare way random - trending topics. We also received our fair share of slightly off-the-wall and even spooky queries last month.
*October Trending Topics by Question Volume*
Five topics stood out in October in terms of increased question volume either month over month or on a single day spike:
1. Facebook Shutout - computer queries surged 129% on Oct. 4th (vs. Oct 3rd)
So many people panicked when Facebook (and sister apps Instagram and WhatsApp) shut down on October 4th, they fled to JustAnswer looking for solutions, perhaps mistaking the systemwide outage for being inadvertently locked out of their accounts. We received so many questions (a 129% increase in tech questions over the day prior), it actually crashed the JustAnswer site briefly that day -- only the second time in history for the company. Overall, JustAnswer tech experts say this is one of the most common questions they get year-round, “I’m locked out of Facebook but can’t reach anyone to help. How can I get back into my account?”
2. Office Equipment - up 113% over September
Either people are getting back to the office and getting their digs set up again, or settling into a more longterm home office arrangement Examples of these questions:
Sample Question: My Mac computer cannot "locate the printer." I am desperate for help.
3. HVAC & Winter Weather Home Prep Questions - up 31% over September
Blame it on the combination of extreme heat at the start of the month in many states with a late October atmospheric river of severe rain storms hitting the west and midwest, and JustAnswer home improvement experts -- specifically HVAC pros -- were very busy last month.
Sample Question: I need help with my water heater. I can't get the pilot light to stay lit.
4. Homeopathy - up 25% over September
A sign people are ditching big pharma, or just looking at alternative treatments as we enter flu season while in the midst of the continuing Covid pandemic, questions about homeopathic health treatments surged in October, reaching an all-time high of more than 500 questions in a month.
Sample Question: I want to get off big pharma meds and use homeopathy. What is the best way to do that?
5. Etiquette - up 7% over September
As kids headed back to school and people started making holiday family gathering and entertaining plans, questions about proper etiquette for different situations rose slightly last month.
Sample Question: Do you have any general social etiquette tips for a small dinner party with some people you love being around and some people you don't like?
*They Asked What?*
As usual, JustAnswer saw it’s share of off-the-wall queries in October -- some of them in the slightly spooky category and others just plain odd. Some the more interesting questions that came in:
*If cloning were perfected, would it be considered immoral?
*I am looking for some detailed information for an adventure/horror story that I am writing - how would a large snake consume a human?
*I had a dream about a ghost strangling me. What does this mean?
*My pet skunk ate chocolate. What should I do?