It’s one of those things that happens so often on the internet: people get confused by the weirdest things. In this case, it started with people who (presumably) wanted to learn more about the coronavirus.
This makes sense — it’s an ongoing outbreak, it’s in the news (we’ve covered it extensively), and people want to know just how serious it is. This was highlighted by Google Trends — a website by Google that analyzes the popularity of top search queries.
The searches for coronavirus spiked.
But among those searchers, some took a weird turn. Some, apparently, were concerned that drinking Corona beer can spread the virus.
The number of searches for corona beer virus have also spiked, as shown on the relative chart from Google Trends. The searchers were most prevalent in Finland, New Zealand, and Slovenia, but also popped up in the US and Canada.
Now, as someone who enjoys the occasional pint of craft beer, I can think of many things to blame Corona for — but causing a viral outbreak is definitely not one of them.
It should be said that Google does not provide absolute numbers so we don’t really know the total number of searches, just that there was a spike. This is still a negligible number when compared to the overall coronavirus searches.
Blame the confusion on Latin
The new virus stems from a family called coronavirus — there’s a bunch of strains that can infect both humans and animals. The most famous coronavirus is probably SARS, which caused a similar outbreak in 2003.
The coronavirus gets its name from its shape, which resembles the solar corona — the aura of plasma that surrounds the Sun (and other stars). Here’s how similar the virus looks to the Sun:
The “corona” in coronavirus, and in the solar corona, comes from the Latin Corona — which means crown. The Corona in the beer comes from Spanish, which is also a Latin language — and it also means crown.
So if you though the beer can give you a virus, blame it on Latin. Oh, and if you’re still afraid of your beer, send it our way. We’ll be sure to dispose of it.