All the latest UK technology news, reviews and analysis

Wikipedia sees traffic surge from blackout

19 Jan 2012
Wikipedia logo

Normally, one would think that deliberately crippling a web site and blocking users from content would be a good way to bring down traffic numbers.

In the case of Wikipedia, however, a forced outage has actually improved traffic numbers.

The crowd-sourced encyclopaedia took its English-language servers offline on Wednesday, as part of a protest against the US SOPA and PIPA legislations. Rather than access Wikipedia pages, users were taking to a special page explaining why the company was choosing to block its site for the 24-hour period.

It seems users more than noticed the protest. Traffic analysis from security firm ZScaler suggests that more people than usual are accessing the site.

According to ZScaler, total traffic numbers to the site are up, but with users spending less time on the site and accessing fewer articles, total bandwidth usage is down.

"More people are flocking to Wikipedia today, but just to see the protest page and some details on SOPA," ZScaler said.

"This behaviour could be described as 'online rubber necking'.

The blackout is part of a larger effort by web publishers to raise awareness of the controversial SOPA bills – a protest that appears to be working. After being condemned by President Obama, the bills have been pulled from vote and many of the original sponsors are beginning to pull out amid pressure from voters.

  • Comment  
  • Tweet  
  • Google plus  
  • Facebook  
  • LinkedIn  
  • Stumble Upon  
Shaun Nichols

Shaun Nichols is the US correspondent for He has been with the company since 2006, originally joining as a news intern at the site's San Francisco offices.

More on Government
What do you think?
blog comments powered by Disqus

BYOD vs CYOD vs BYOC poll

Which approach is your firm taking to managing employees' mobile devices?

Popular Threads

Powered by Disqus
Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet powered by Android KitKat 4.4

Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet video

We take a look at the lightweight, waterproof tablet

Updating your subscription status Loading

Get the latest news (daily or weekly) direct to your inbox with V3 newsletters.

newsletter sign-up button

Data protection: the key challenges

Deduplication is a foundational technology for efficient backup and recovery


iPad makes its mark in the enterprise

The iPad can become a supercharged unified communications endpoint, allowing users to enhance their productivity

Litigation eDiscovery Analyst (DocuMatrix, Relativity, Introspect)

Litigation eDiscovery Analyst (DocuMatrix, Relativity...

C# .NET Developer (SQL, Algorithms, Data Algorithms, Artificial

C# .NET Developer (SQL, Algorithms, Data Algorithms...

Software Development Engineer

Develop: Customise: Configure. Maximise your technical...

Retail and Finance Application Developer and Support Analyst

MS Dynamics Nav: Retail and Finance Application Developer...
To send to more than one email address, simply separate each address with a comma.