At the end of each month, here at Netizency, we delve into the ever-evolving world of social media and online platforms in the Gulf. Our goal? To shine a spotlight on the key trends that matter and dissect the conversations making waves. To achieve this, we’ve curated a set of keywords in both Arabic and English that encapsulate discussions relevant to the region’s main industries. These keywords are then sorted based on the frequency of mentions, allowing us to analyze the discourse across social and online media throughout the entire month.

The categories ranking remained stable in terms of mention volume during May, but interactions had an interesting twist. Notably, Health saw a 56% surge in interactions compared to April, the highest among all categories. Let’s delve into the factors driving this uptick and the broader discourse among the top-performing categories.


In the midst of the usual hubbub among tech enthusiasts sharing tips and tricks around generative AI tools, ChatGPT grabbed the spotlight in this month’s discussions, all thanks to the launch of GPT-4o Users were actively sharing posts about the update, praising its doubled processing speed, and its impressive ability to reason across voice, text, and vision. Mainstream sources also joined in, offering more insights into the new features and highlighting the debut of the ChatGPT desktop app for macOS. However, amid the excitement, the news of OpenAI’s Chief Scientist, Ilya Sutskever, stepping down sparked speculation among users, with some referring to his recent controversy involving an attempt to oust Sam Altman.

Discussions originating from the UAE have surged this month, particularly focusing on the emergence of robots at gas stations (yes, you read that right!). ADNOC recently launched a project at the Al Reem Island petrol station, introducing a robotic fueling arm to revolutionize the customer experience with AI technology. Equipped with sensors and cameras, it autonomously approaches vehicles, opens fuel tank caps, and aligns nozzles for refueling, ensuring rapid and eco-friendly fueling while effectively managing potential spills. However, despite the praise from many users for this project and its enhancement of speed, convenience, and safety, others have expressed concerns about job displacement. They also lament the potential loss of the personal touch provided by friendly attendants, highlighting the importance of human connection in an increasingly automated environment. 

Additionally, Lenovo was responsible for several peaks in chatter across the Electronics dashboard this month, with discussions covering various topics. Tech influencers like @TariqTechs reviewed the new ThinkPad X1 FOLD 16 Gen 1, highlighting its book-like design, and engaged in conversations about the Lenovo Legion Go and other products, which captured high engagement. The brand also received notable coverage for its expansion plan in Saudi Arabia, which includes establishing a tech and manufacturing hub. Supported by a strategic collaboration framework agreement with Alat, a Public Investment Fund (PIF) company, this initiative aims to aid the Kingdom’s shift towards sustainable manufacturing, aligning with its 2030 clean energy goals.


This year’s Met Gala delivered both the expected extravagance and unexpected parallels. The theme, “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion,” along with the dress code, “The Garden of Time,” inspired celebrities to dress accordingly. Many fashion advocates shared photos of celebrities’ styles and posted polls to vote on whose outfit best matched the theme. However, many others took to social media to highlight the striking resemblance between this year’s theme and the Hunger Games movie. This comparison shed light on the jarring contrast between the lavish event and the ongoing tragedies in Gaza, emphasizing the stark disparity between privilege and persecution. Comments expressing a sensation akin to living in The Hunger Games, prompted by the juxtaposition of images from the Met Gala and Palestine trending simultaneously, underscored the gravity of the situation.

Following the Met Gala, a global movement has emerged under the hashtag #BlockOut2024. This initiative arose from users determined to take a stand against celebrity culture that remained silent on current global tragedies by reducing their follower counts and blocking them. Many users have created dedicated accounts to share videos compiling lists of celebrities, influencers, and brands to block en masse, holding them accountable for failing to take a humanitarian stand. Videos showing the real-time follower counts of these celebrities dropping, with comparisons of their follower bases before and after the campaign, have gone viral, affecting both global and regional figures.

Furthermore, emotions ran high in the Entertainment sphere as news broke about Mohammed Abdu, the beloved Saudi singer, battling cancer. Across the GCC and beyond, heartfelt messages poured in from devoted fans and celebrities, expressing profound hopes for his swift recovery. Amidst this wave of support, users courageously opened up, sharing personal narratives of their own or their loved ones’ battles against cancer, emphasizing the desperate need for a cure to this relentless disease. It is worth mentioning that this story captured an overlap in our upcoming category: Health. 


Four years after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, AstraZeneca found itself in the spotlight once more this May, but for less than favorable reasons. The company recently disclosed potential side effects of its vaccine that could lead to fatal blood clots. This prompted a global withdrawal of the COVID-19 vaccine just days after acknowledging these side effects. The announcement sparked a wave of negative sentiment, with news outlets reporting on numerous British families suing the brand and seeking substantial compensation. GCC-based users’ reactions to the news have been overwhelmingly negative, with many expressing fear and a lack of trust in global pharmaceutical companies.

Negative sentiments also dominated the Health discourse in the next trending story. Mainstream sources reported on a MERS outbreak in Saudi Arabia, raising concerns among health experts. Historically, this disease was linked to individuals working closely with mammals or consuming their raw milk. However, this outbreak presents a different scenario, with three individuals contracting the coronavirus despite having no direct contact with camels. This development has put health experts on high alert as they scramble to ascertain the origins of the MERS outbreak. In response to the news, many users expressed fears of potential undetected mild cases spreading. Others left comments offering prayers for everyone’s safety, hoping to avoid facing another pandemic.

Finally, an intriguing initiative from PureHealth made waves this month with the introduction of Sakina, a dedicated platform aimed at promoting positive mental health and providing holistic care. This significant step forward seeks to break cultural taboos surrounding mental health issues in the region, and with official endorsement, it has the potential to safeguard the well-being of all community members.

That wraps up this month’s recap! To stay in the loop with the latest social media trends,
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*This article was originally published by Communicate ME, access it here.