July 24, 2014

Examining the Popularity of Wikipedia Articles & Two New Wikipedia Popular Article Charts (Updated Weekly)

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A new special report from The Signpost (a Wikimedia publication) provides an interesting look at how and why some articles receive “heightened popularity”. Reasons include, “Slashdot effect”, Google Doodles, and of course cultural events and deaths.

The report also mentions two recently launched charts (updated weekly) from Wikimedia.

1. WP5000

WP:5000, an automated list of the 5,000 most popular pages on Wikipedia, is now being compiled weekly. It also identifies how many featured articles, good articles, and lists are included.

This report is based on raw data and includes non-article pages and popularly requested redlinks, like “Com/fluendo/plugin/KateDec.class” at No. 15 on the current list (a script used to stream media content; see Cortado (software)), as well as 18k Gold Watch at position 166, a recurring entry likely fueled by spambots (note that a redirect has only recently been added).

2. WP:5000/Top25Report

The WP:5000/Top25Report is a manually moderated weekly Top 25 list started in January 2013 of the most popular articles on English Wikipedia. Similar in format to best-selling book or music charts, it is a bit more user friendly in that it excludes non-article pages, likely DOS attack entries, and the Main page. It also tracks how long an article has remained in the Top 25.

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Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.