A sexual kink refers to a unique or unconventional sexual preference or behaviour that deviates from traditional societal norms or practices. These inclinations, which can range from fantasies to specific activities, often enrich an individual’s sexual experience or deepen their intimate connections. While there is a stereotypical conception of what a kink is and who may conduct kink-related activities, these preferences, behaviours, and/or activities are ever-changing and often region-specific. To quantify how kinks have evolved in the United Kingdom, more than kink-related keywords were analysed via Google trend data to assess regional differences, as well as how each of the keywords trends over a 10-year and 5-year period.


Historical monthly Google Trends’ Interest Over Time data was collected for 100+ keywords for the date range between 01-09-2013 to 01-09-2023. For this analysis, the four Great Britain (GB) regions, England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland were used. Each region is represented by a time series of 121 timesteps of values ranging from 0 to 100. Please refer to Google Trends to understand how this data is assessed.
Time-series Decomposition
To assess the evolution of the keywords for each region, a Bayesian structure time series model was used to decompose the time series data into a trend, seasonality, and residual component (Decomposition of time series). This allowed for a higher-level description of how the data was evolving over time that takes into account structural breaks which occur when the underlying data-generating process changes abruptly. Furthermore, by assessing each component separately, a more accurate understanding of the underlying trend could be captured regardless of seasonal effects, noise, and anomalies.