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Looking through the list of the top 10 most popular news stories with V3 readers this year gives a good indication of the hottest technology topics and products dominating the industry for the past 12 months.
Coming in at the number one slot was an article from March about the defeat of a law aiming to stop firms from requesting Facebook log-on details from their employees.
Privacy has been a constant issue for the social networking giant this year. In this case, Facebook was trying to protect user data; somewhat ironic as Facebook has been criticised several times this year for its lax approach to privacy when it comes to subscriber data, especially on the issue of sharing it with advertisers and not allowing users to have a say in how their information is used.
The iPhone 5 launch was one of the most hotly-anticipated events of the year, and the new slimmed down, larger-screened device did not disappoint.
Gartner advised in May that smartphone sales had declined for the first time since 2009, due to users holding off for the iPhone 5. But once the latest Apple handset was released, there was the usual buying frenzy, with Apple reporting sales of five million in the first three days. And the cash keeps flowing in as Apple launches the iPhone 5 in new markets: after just three days of the handset being on the market in China mid-December, it has clocked up two millions sales.
Extradition treaties were also frequently debated, as the US tried to persuade the UK to hand over two British citizens for tech-related offences.
The outlook looked bleak for Richard O’Dwyer, as the Home Office indicated to V3 that it wouldn’t be swayed by popular opinion and take into account a petition calling for any extradition attempt to be blocked.
Although Theresa May declined to support O’Dwyer, his two-year ordeal came to a close in December when he signed a deferred prosecution agreement and paid a £20,000 fine. Fortunately the year has also ended on a high for Gary McKinnon, who has just found out that he won’t face any further action in the UK for his hacking offences, after May stepped in to block his extradition earlier in the year.
The top 10 most read list also includes articles a couple of V3 exclusives, such as a breakthrough in China’s web-blocking understanding, and Google's distinct lack of interest in apps for Windows 8.
Also popular were stories about Samsung getting behind Android Ice Cream Sandwich, and Intel launching big data products. No doubt many of these topics will feature in the most popular articles of 2013.
Happy Christmas to all our readers!
Facebook privacy protection law shot down by Congress
House votes against rule that would prevent employers demanding social media log on details
Swedish researchers uncover key to China's Tor-blocking system
The Great Firewall of China is stopping citizens using anonymous browsing system
Apple iPhone 5 kills 2012 mobile market growth
Mobile market declines for the first time in 10 quarters as consumers hold off upgrading
Home Office to ignore Wikipedia founder's petition against O'Dwyer extradition
Theresa May deaf to 200,000-strong plea
O2 network outage affecting voice and data services
Firm coy on cause of issue and scope of affected area
Google rules out Gmail and Drive apps for
Firm has no plans to produce apps for Microsoft systems
Samsung Galaxy Note Ice Cream Sandwich update confirmed
Premium Suite upgrade promises improved video and S Pen features too
Raspberry Pi on track to build over one million units a year [Video]
Executive director Eben Upton outlines next steps for the bare bones computer
Intel releases open source GraphBuilder for big data
Tool aims to improve analysis of unstructured data
Microsoft moves to triple hackers' exploit development costs
Trustworthy Computing mounting three pronged attack on cyber criminals' wallets
Madeline Bennett is editor of V3 and The INQUIRER. Previously, she was editor of IT Week. Prior to becoming a journalist, Madeline was an English teacher at a London secondary school. Madeline is a regular technology commentator on TV and radio, including Sky, BBC and CNN.