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We’ve been covering some pretty dark subject matter on Brandwatch React recently.

We just looked at all the items and industries being stamped out by murderous millennials (sorry, pet food and dairy).

And then we examined how the way we talk about death matches up with actual causes of death (it doesn’t – there is a large disconnect between what we worry about online and what will most likely kill us).

So, we thought, why not go for a trifecta of depressing subjects? Why not look at the end of the world?

Some background

I’ve had a Brandwatch Analytics query running for two years that picks up public online mentions of the apocalypse, armageddon, and the end of the world. I knew that one day I would look into it properly, to see what people were talking about (both based on popular fictional stories and grounded in science). And today that day came.

So, I took my two years worth of mentions (1,081,146 total, gathered between May 2017 and May 2019), and I started to split them out.

How will the world end?

To break out the data, I looked at what was rising up within topic clouds to see the main drivers of conversation, as well as searching for popular theories and tropes around the end of the world.

My intention wasn’t necessarily to find what people thought would cause the end of the world, since there’s so much chat about horror and sci-fi stories (American Horror Story’s most recent season is literally called ‘Apocalypse’). But I was keen to see how more scientific theories mixed with the mystical.

With that in mind, check out the following breakdown.

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