Several sites (say, https://www.grammar.com/neighbor_vs._neighbour, https://proofreadmydocument.com.au/writing-tips/differences-between-american-and-australian-english, https://au.answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20090413020224AA64USB) say that Australian English favours neighbour over neighbor.

Why is it that a major search engine, on the contrary, favours

site:.au "neighbor"


site:.au "neighbour"


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    Interestingly, I see your singular searches return about twice as many hits for the AmE spelling as the BrE version, but when I search for the plural versions, the counts are about equal. Which I suspect may simply reflect the orthography of the popular TV soap opera series Neighbours. Oct 2 '18 at 12:19

I would not rely on Google hits for something like this. Any copyeditor will refer to an officially accepted dictionary, not Google. (Unless there is a specific house style guide that says something different.)

From the Macquarie dictionary, both spellings are officially recognized, although neighbour is the preferred spelling. (This is similar to Canada, which uses the Canadian Oxford Dictionary and accepts both spellings but favours the UK spelling.)

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