Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

The Ice Bucket Challenge catapulted ALS into our lives, and in 2014 we searched for the disease more than the entire last decade.

Ice Bucket Challenge

Getting cold for a good cause

Pioneered by Chris Kennedy, the campaign encouraged people to film themselves pouring ice water over their heads, make a donation and nominate friends to do the same within 24 hours. There are now over 90 million search results for 'ice bucket challenge,' turning a little-known disorder into a global conversation.

Famous faces helped break the ice

After the challenge was embraced by numerous celebrities, public awareness of ALS soared.

Explore Trends
Oprah Winfrey and Bill Gates

ALS is a neurodegenerative disorder that damages nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Every year 5,600 people are diagnosed in the US alone, according to the ALS Association.

Our fourth highest query during the campaign was for 'ice bucket fails' as we searched for the mishaps of our clumsy friends, and we even searched for 'how to make ice’.

"That’s not ice. That's $10,000 in cash that I'm donating to the ALS foundation."

Millions of challenge videos have been created, and it would take years to watch them all. Charlie Sheen made a point of ducking the challenge but still pledged handsomely.

'how to donate'

Global support soared, as searches to get involved tripled in August 2014.

Top five searched questions about ALS in 2014:

  1. What is ALS?
  2. What causes ALS?
  3. How many people are affected by ALS?
  4. How is ALS diagnosed?
  5. How many years do you live with ALS?
See the 2014 lists

Next level

Searches for Canadian ice hockey player Paul Bissonnette spiked over 9x after he took the challenge to the extreme. In skimpy swimwear. On a mountain.

In the month of August, we made over 90 million searches and raised over $100M for the ALS Association and related charities.

Amazing what a bucket of ice, a mobile phone and some fearless friends can achieve.