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Search with foresight: Bing US predicts Oscar winners

Several Oscar statues

Microsoft have taken search to the next level, with the US-facing version of their Bing search engine currently predicting its ‘best guess’ of who will win an Oscar this weekend.

The 87th Academy Awards ceremony is scheduled to occur on February 22nd, yet search for ‘oscars nominations’ on Bing US (click the Settings cog on the UK version to switch country) and you’ll be presented with a list of winners.

A caption explains that these are “nominees and predictions”, although only one nominee is displayed per category – for example, Birdman for Best Picture, Eddie Redmayne for Best Actor, and Julianne Moore for Best Actress.

It’s interesting to see one of the major search engines going so public with its predictive capabilities – we know Google use search trends to predict influenza epidemics and so on, but pop culture predictions seem to be a new application for search.

What does this mean for SEO? Well, depending on how accurate Bing’s predictions turn out to be, it’s a helping hand for any websites with an entertainment-focused audience, potentially giving you the chance to write up articles about the Oscar winners before they have been announced.

Just don’t rely 100% on Bing being correct – the Academy are notoriously fickle in their decisions, particularly on the biggest prizes like Best Picture.