Bill Kirby

Online news editor for The Augusta Chronicle.

Augustachronicle.com's top 10 stories received many clicks

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Public salary databases were more popular than any single news story.

-- Mel Brooks

At the end of one year and the beginning of the next, news media like to review the year's "top stories."

We didn't do that this year, but I can tell you something about the news of 2010 -- the 10 most popular stories on The Augusta Chronicle's Web site augustachronicle.com.

I set up a computer search that provided the number of page views different stories received. It's not as clean as the usual "top 10" list. Often, multiple versions of stories show up -- sometimes several in one day as news develops and headlines change. I didn't combine any of these efforts because I wasn't sure if I might overlook a little-noticed update.

That being said, here's the list:

NO. 10 with 12,508 page views -- "Judge shoots intruder." This was the story from Aug. 20 when Chief Superior Court Judge Carlisle Overstreet awoke to discover a burglar in his home and shot him dead.

NO. 9 with 12,965 page views was "Ku Klux Klan plans rally for ASU student's rights" on Oct. 5. The student, of course, was Jennifer Keeton, who had sued the school because she said it warned her it would expel her from the graduate Counselor Education program because "she holds Christian ethical convictions on matters of human sexuality and gender identity," according to court documents.

Keeton immediately issued a statement that she didn't want the Klan's help, but on Oct. 23 they showed up anyway.

NO. 8 with 13,906 page views was "Live chicken set on fire for video." This Oct. 26 story reported how an Augusta teen's mother turned him in to police after finding the video posted by her son and his friends on Facebook and YouTube.

NO. 7 with 14,205 page views was "I-20 wreck kills Augusta pediatrician, wife" on Aug. 16. It is a measure of the respect and admiration this community had for Dr. Julian Tanenbaum and his wife, Beverly, to see the interest in the accident that claimed their lives.

NO. 6 with 14,441 page views was another Jennifer Keeton story, "ASU student says gays have identity confusion." It was a July 23 story in which Keeton explained her dispute with the school in an interview with The Chronicle .

NO. 5 with 16,804 page views was my favorite: Masters Champ Phil Mickelson -- wearing his green jacket -- and driving through the Washington Road Krispy Kreme drive-thru, as captured by a surprised (but alert) Krispy Kreme employee on April 13, the morning after his Masters Tournament victory.

NO. 4 with 18,533 page views was "Shoplifting suspect stabs Marine, police say," This was Black Friday when local Marine Cpl. Phillip Duggan helped subdue a theft suspect at Best Buy and got stabbed in the back for his efforts. The story went national. Fortunately Duggan wasn't severely injured and was soon back helping with Toys for Tots donation collections.

NO. 3 with 20,016 page views was "Man killed in break-in at judge's home identified." Again, this Aug. 19 story only made the Web site as an update to the story at No. 10.

NO. 2 with 21,237 page views was "Basketball league for white Americans targets Augusta." This story ran last Jan. 19 and quickly gained local scorn and national notoriety.

Interest in the mysterious white basketball league, however, seems to have dribbled away.

Finally, the NO. 1 story of 2010: with 21,252 page views was "Christian student sues ASU." this July 22 story was the first about Jennifer Keeton, the ASU student who took the school to court.

Now here's the surprise, to me at least, that the No. 1 news headline was actually No. 179 on our list of the Web site's most viewed items.

Many other things, categories, subdivisions and features of our Web site got many more mouse clicks. Our databases, particularly the salary databases of county employees and MCG workers were more popular than any single news story.

Other sections and features of our Web site do very well, too. Online obituaries are quite popular, no doubt attracting the regular interest of former Augustans living far away.

It also goes without saying that many of our past Masters Golf Tournament features and databases continue to get frequent visitors. Golf fans love to read our Masters site year-round, not just that first full week of April.

And finally, if you're wondering how my columns did, the most popular one online was Aug. 20 in which I suggested the Postal Service could make money selling its most popular item -- those plastic tote boxes.

With 3,271 page views, it ranked No. 1,006 on our top online stories of 2010.

I'll do better next year.

Comments (5) Add comment
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Rajiv
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Rajiv 01/07/11 - 07:01 am
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I can't believe none of the

I can't believe none of the "Were You Spotted?" features made the list based on the amount of space and storage resources they take up. Also, nothing from Glynn Moore in Top-10? How could this happen?

Dixieman
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Dixieman 01/07/11 - 07:19 am
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Irritating Milton Ruben car

Irritating Milton Ruben car ads surely were #1 unless clicking the "Skip advertisement" button does not count! I cannot begin to express how much I hate them....

belle
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belle 01/07/11 - 09:35 am
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I'm with you there Dixieman!
Unpublished

I'm with you there Dixieman!

tinytuna
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tinytuna 01/07/11 - 09:41 am
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I agree with Mr. Kirby. My

I agree with Mr. Kirby. My favorite story is about Phil Mickelson driving through Krispy Kreme. I cut it out and put it in my scrapbook. I guess it's a feel good kind of story. I really got tired of hearing about Jennifer. Where is she now? Her fifteen minutes of fame is gone.

Southern_Patriot
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Southern_Patriot 01/07/11 - 10:04 am
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Mega Dittos on the Milton

Mega Dittos on the Milton Rueben ad

Alan English
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Alan English 01/07/11 - 01:09 pm
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Ads help support the site. We

Ads help support the site. We hope digital subscriptions will add to the mix and help advance and fuel the site to greater heights.
Spotted, indeed, is a leading page view contributor. Here are some stats and you may find interesting:
1. Augusta sites exceeded 24M page views in April led by Masters coverage.
2. Stats in Kirby’s column are for single stories. Many related and follow stories combine to bring 100K and more to topic coverage. Example: Extreme Makeover coverage exceeded 500K views in a few days.
3. Spotted coverage of local events (by us and by you) exceeded 28M page views in 2010.
The Augusta sites garnered well over 100 million pages views in 2010.

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