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What Wikipedia's most popular pages say about us

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amy winehouse (wikimedia)
amy winehouse (wikimedia)

Wikipedia member West.andrew.g has spent more than three years downloading and analyzing data on traffic flows across the site's English-language pages, as part of an ongoing research project. Last week, he and another member published some of their insights in The Signpost, Wikipedia's community-managed newspaper, providing an overview of the most popular pages in both the long- and short-term. Those in the former category include Facebook, Google, and YouTube, while those in the latter are typically driven by isolated events that result in sharp traffic spikes — celebrity deaths and Super Bowl halftime shows, specifically.