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What were the most-read articles in 2012?

A “top-ten” list of those articles published on The Urbanist that attracted the largest numbers of readers over the course of the last year

An interactive map of where the bombs fell during the London Blitz

Of 670 articles in The Urbanist’s archive, the most-read during 2012 were:

  1. What’re the world’s most walkable cities?
  2. How can a country win more Olympic medals?
  3. Where are the hip suburbs in Australia?
  4. What’s  the TV news cycle doing to cycling?
  5. Are small apartments too tiny?
  6. Will Flinders St Station be the next Guggenheim?
  7. Is Melbourne really the world’s most liveable city?
  8. Why do subways cost so much more here than elsewhere?
  9. How big is Melbourne?
  10. What’s the geography of celebrity?

Nine of these ten articles were published in 2012. How big is Melbourne? has enduring popularity – it was published in 2010 and was the most-read article in 2011.

Here are previous most-read lists from 2010 and 2011, when this site went by the name The Melbourne Urbanist:

2010: Merry Xmas (and some reflections on the blog)

2011: What were the most-read posts of 2011?

Why some articles attract more readers than others is an interesting question. Undoubtedly its partly to do with the intrinsic appeal of the subject and how long ago it was posted, but what seems especially important is the extent to which it’s re-tweeted or linked to other sites.

For example, the most-read article of 2012, What’re the world’s most walkable cities?, attained top position because Tyler Cowen from Marginal Revolution posted a link to it on his site. The article How big is Melbourne? continues to attract readers because it’s frequently linked to by universities here and overseas.

The number of Comments, Likes, and Tweets is not always a reliable guide to how popular an article is. What’s the geography of celebrity? was the tenth most-read article, yet received no comments and just three tweets.

For that tiny minority interested in such things, The Urbanist generated 478,000 pageviews over 2012 (according to Google Analytics).

Most readers were from Australia, especially the central areas of Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Canberra and Perth. The leading concentrations of international readers were London, New York and Singapore.

Note: re the exhibit of the London Blitz, see also an earlier post on London during WW2, What does ‘random’ look like?

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  • 1
    SBH
    Posted January 4, 2013 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    what MHL not in the top ten? Something must be broken!

  • 2
    Dylan Nicholson
    Posted January 4, 2013 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    I suspect if you summed up all the articles that mentioned MHL either in the body or the comments, it’d be pretty close to all of them…

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