We turned to our old pal Wikipedia a lot this year, but judging from a list of the most-viewed Wikipedia articles in 2012 put together by Johan Gunnarsson, some of the pages we visited most might surprise you. Wikipedia doesn’t rank its pages at the end of the year like so many other sites do, so Gunnarsson put the 100-entry list together by looking at the service’s log files. The page users visited most in 2012? Facebook, by a pretty significant amount.
Wikipedia’s Facebook page received 32,647,942 views throughout the year, three million more than its closest competitor – the page for “Wiki” only had 29,613,759 views to boast about. Some of the years biggest franchises got some major attention on Wikipedia, with The Hunger Games, The Dark Knight Rises, and yes, 50 Shades of Grey all ranking in the top ten. Here’s the full top ten list, racy adult novels and all:
1. Facebook – 32,647,942 views
2. Wiki – 29,613,759 views
3. Deaths in 2012 – 25,418,587 views
4. One Direction – 22,351,637 views
5. The Avengers (2012 film) – 22,268,644 views
6. Fifty Shades of Grey – 21,779,423 views
7. 2012 phenomenon – 20,619,920 views
8. The Dark Knight Rises – 18,882,885 views
9. Google – 18,508,719 views
10. The Hunger Games – 18,431,626 views
Gunnarsson and Wikimedia spokesperson Jay Walsh both told All Things D that Facebook landing at the top of the list could be a case of users searching for Facebook with browser-integrated search engines and ending up on the Wikipedia page instead (which would also explain why “Wiki” took home second place). Either that, or there’s simply a lot of interest in how the world’s biggest websites made it to the top.
Gunnarsson’s list isn’t just a top ten list though, as it actually ranks the 100 most-viewed Wikipedia pages for 2012. Notable entries include YouTube at number 12, Sex at number 18, and the Illuminati at number 33. Both World Wars ranked on the list, as did the Android operating system and, perhaps unsurprisingly, “Human penis size.”
It gets even better though, as Gunnarsson has also produced top 100 lists for a ton of other languages. If you have some free time, be sure to head over to his site and take a look at everything. Just be warned: it’s very easy to waste a lot of time browsing through those lists, so it may not be the best idea to head there if you have any pressing appointments that need your attention.