Happy New Year everyone! Last year's "The Numbers
" post proved to be quite popular, so we decided to do it again. 2011 was yet another banner year for Techdirt.
We handled around 14.7 million visits last year (up from 2009's 11M). Those visitors checked out the 3,923 stories that we posted and submitted 205,129 comments. Oddly, the #1 story for 2011 was one that was actually written in 2010, about the ubiquitous "Free Public WiFi
" mystery. It turns out that a lot
of people remain curious about all those "free public WiFi" ad hoc networks you see. Two stories about SOPA/PIPA graced the top ten, as well as the harrowing censorship tale of dajaz1.com. It appears that you folks are concerned about government censorship.
2011 was also a great year for the comment voting system. Congrats to Marcus Carab
and Dark Helmet
, who garnered the highest cumulative scores for insightful and funniest comments, respectively -- and, amazingly, each came in second place to the other in the category they didn't come in first. I sense a growing rivalry...
The top browser used by Techdirt readers was still Firefox (35%). Chrome, which lost by a narrow margin to IE last year, blew past IE's 15% to 30%. And there are still nearly 100,000 that are, despite all of the best efforts of Microsoft to convince you otherwise, still inexplicably using IE6
Mobile usage jumped up to 1.6M visits this year, which is nearly a 200% increase from 2010. 615k of those visits came from iPhones, versus 566k for Android and 322k from iPad. In aggregate, Apple devices did beat Android. iPhone beat out Android last year by nearly 2:1, so clearly that gap is quickly closing.
Where did this year's traffic come from? Reddit jumped in the charts this year, referring 2.1M visits, up 277% from last year's 557k. I'm a little saddened to see that Slashdot is definitely not what it used to be -- referrals from them dropped by nearly a third last year. I suppose getting Slashdotted is no longer what it used to be. Continuing to perform quite well, however, are both StumbleUpon and HackerNews. Facebook also sent a decent amount of traffic.
To hear some of Google's enemies (including politicians in Congress) tell the story, the only way sites get traffic is via search engines -- and Google specifically. They act as though, if Google isn't sending you tons of traffic, you don't exist. Google definitely does send us a fair bit of traffic, but only about 20% of our actual traffic came from searches. We certainly value that 20%, but it definitely shows that you don't have to
rely on search traffic to get traffic. Even more telling, here are the top three search terms that brought people to Techdirt in 2011:
- tech dirt
Where are you all coming from? It's really not that
different than in 2010. The vast majority of you are from the US. Canada is second, followed closely by the UK. After that, there's a pretty sharp drop off to Australia, then Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden. France, India and New Zealand round out the top 10. Last year, we noted that Japan narrowly beat out China to follow India as the leading Asian countries. This year (despite stories of how we're sometimes blocked in China), China jumped into second place in Asia, followed by South Korea, who leap-frogged Japan. Brazil was tops in South America and South Africa was tops in Africa -- same as in 2010.
All in all, people from 230 countries or territories visited Techdirt. Just like last year, there was a single visit from Christmas Island -- though, last year, we had someone in our comments suggest that the single Christmas Island visit may have been him
, and not really from Christmas Island.
Last year, we noted that the only countries that we appeared to get absolutely no visits from were... North Korea, Western Sahara & Chad. Western Sahara and Chad, once again, failed to send any visitors... but, in a stunning development, we got two
visitors from North Korea. And, in case you were wondering, Belarus, whose new laws
will make it difficult for people there to access many websites, actually sent over 1,000 visitors last year. Also, I have no idea why, but the nearly 1,000 visitors from Gibraltar spent the highest average time on the site of visitors from any other country/territory -- averaging
nearly 20 minutes per visit. People from Macedonia actually visited the most pages (on average) per visit -- at just under 6 on average from over 3,500 visitors.
And, of course, this isn't just about the odd facts, but about the overall community -- with many of you being quite
loyal, which we appreciate to no end. 1.5 million of the visits -- or just over 10% came from people who visited Techdirt more than 100 times
last year -- and the vast majority of those (just under 1 million) actually visited the site more than 200 times
. You people rock.
Anyway, thanks again to everyone for making yet another year of Techdirt awesome. Here's to a fantastic 2012.
Top Ten Stories, by Unique Pageviews, on Techdirt for 2011:
2011's Top Ten Stories, by comment volume
- The History Of The (Fake) 'Free Public WiFi' You Always See At Airports
- SOPA Markup Runs Out Of Time; Likely Delayed Until 2012 [Update: Or Not...]
- Apple Continues To Insist Only It Can Use An Apple In A Logo; Threatens Small German Cafe
- Guy Who Created The TSA Says It's Failed, And It's Time To Dismantle It
- Craigslist Trying To Destroy The Life Of Someone Who Made Posting To Craigslist Easier
- Breaking News: Feds Falsely Censor Popular Blog For Over A Year, Deny All Due Process, Hide All Details...
- Company Thanks Guy Who Alerted Them To Big Security Flaw By Sending The Cops... And The Bill
- NY Times & LA Times Both Come Out Against SOPA & PIPA
- EU Officially Seizes The Public Domain, Retroactively Extends Copyright
- PROTECT IP Renamed E-PARASITES Act; Would Create The Great Firewall Of America
- If You're Arguing That Someone 'Deserves' Copyright, Your Argument Is Wrong (823 comments)
- Do A Little Dance, Make A Little Love...Get Bodyslammed Tonight (At The Jefferson Memorial) (457 comments)
- Judge Bans Handing (Factual) Pamphlets To Jurors; Raising First Amendment Issues (429 comments)
- TSA Agent Threatens Woman With Defamation, Demands $500k For Calling Intrusive Search 'Rape' (403 comments)
- Revisiting The Question Of Who Deserves Copyright (376 comments)
- PROTECT IP Renamed E-PARASITES Act; Would Create The Great Firewall Of America (376 comments)
- Senators Want To Put People In Jail For Embedding YouTube Videos (374 comments)
- Monkeys Don't Do Fair Use; News Agency Tells Techdirt To Remove Photos (372 comments)
- Why Is The Justice Department Pretending US Copyright Laws Apply In The UK? (351 comments)
- Breaking News: Feds Falsely Censor Popular Blog For Over A Year, Deny All Due Process, Hide All Details... (341 comments)
* Note that only 2 of the most commented stories were also among the top 10 most visited stories, once again showing that traffic and the number of comments don't necessarily correlate.
2011's Top Users, by comment volume
2011's Most Insightful Users, as voted by the community
- The eejit - 3,963 comments
- Jay - 3,433 comments
- Marcus Carab - 2,255 comments
- Richard - 2,209 comments
- PaulT - 1,841 comments
- Hephaestus - 1,662 comments
- nasch - 1,456 comments
- Dark Helmet - 1,426 comments
- abc gum - 1,357 comments
- HothMonster - 1,313 comments
2011's Funniest Users, as voted by the community
- Marcus Carab
- Dark Helmet
- Chris Rhodes
- The eejit
- That Anonymous Coward
- E. Zachary Knight
- Dark Helmet
- Marcus Carab
- Capitalist Lion Tamer
- The eejit
- :Lobo Santo
- Chris Rhodes
- That Anonymous Coward