Sunday, November 18, 2007

My most visited websites according to

It's been six months since I first installed the super-useful Bookmarks Firefox extension which, amongst other things, displays your bookmarks in a Firefox toolbar ranked according to how frequently you visit them. As well as providing quick access to the sites you visit most often (assuming you've bookmarked them using of course), the toolbar also serves as an interesting record of which sites you personally find the stickiest. Below is a list of the 30 sites I've visited most frequently over the past six months according to the toolbar.

1. Facebook - the social networking equivalent of crack - and I'm an addict
2. Flickr - the number one photo sharing site - sublime in its simplicity
3. Bloglines - my preferred choice of feed reader (yes, I know everyone else has switched to Google Reader)
4. BBC - outside of work, used mostly for news, weather and the Radio Player
5. StatCounter - for analysing traffic to this blog and other sites I've built
6. fabric of folly - this blog
7. netvibes - personalised homepage and online to-do list
8. Yahoo! Mail - after 10 years, I can't be arsed to change my email address
9. Blogger - easy-to-use blogging software
10. Amazon - for buying stuff and then selling it later on Marketplace
11. mininova - my number one source of televisual content
12. - music discovery and charts. lots of charts
13. Technorati - original blog search engine, although it's star is now on the wane
14. PBwiki - awesome collaborative working tool
15. BBC Webmail - remote access to work e-mail
16. Photo Friday - weekly photo competition
17. eBay - for selling stuff which isn't listed on Amazon Marketplace
18. PlusNet - my ISP - for checking how much bandwidth I've eaten up each month
19. LondonNet - London listings, including what's on at the flicks
20. - the social bookmarking daddy
21. IMDb - the ultimate online film (and increasingly TV) reference
22. StumbleUpon - for when Google isn't sufficiently serendipitous
23. Smile - my bank - for working out how much money I've spent at Amazon
24. Veoh - high quality video streaming/download site
25. Royal Mail - for working out the postage on the crap I've sold on eBay
26. Apple - gadget porn - mostly looking but not touching
27. Empire - my first port of call for trusted film reviews
28. James Cridland's Blog - one of the most consistently cogent blogs I read
29. Twitter - In the words of The Beautiful South, I love you but you're boring
30. National Rail - for planning my preferred means of getting from A to B


Most of the sites are fairly mainstream / old skool
Despite the huge number of shiny new Web 2.0 sites that pass through my browser each day, very few of them become regular destinations. Almost all of the sites in my Top 30 have been kicking around for a good few years now.

Most of the sites are task-oriented
Whilst there's little doubt that the web is becoming more of an entertainment destination, it's interesting how much of my online activity is still very task-oriented, as the below categorisation shows.

- Blogging (6 sites - Bloglines, StatCounter, fabric of folly, Blogger, Technorati, James Cridland's Blog)
- Real-world logistics (5 sites - PlusNet, LondonNet, Smile, Royal Mail, National Rail)
- Search and aggregation (3 sites - netvibes,, StumbleUpon)
- Commerce (3 sites - eBay, Amazon and Apple)
- E-mail (2 sites - Yahoo! Mail and BBC Webmail)
- Social Networking (2 sites - Facebook and Twitter)
- Photo sharing (2 sites - Flickr and Photo Friday)
- Film (2 sites - IMDb, Empire)
- TV/video (2 sites - mininova and Veoh)
- Music (1 site -
- News (1 site - BBC)
- Collaborative working (1 site - PBwiki)

Yahoo! and Google know a lot about me

Hardly a revelation, but it's sobering to note how much data the big web companies must have collected about me once you factor in their various acquisitions. Yahoo! are able to piece together data from my usage of Flickr, Yahoo! Mail and whilst Google can supplement my search history with my usage of Blogger. And, whilst they may not be linking the data yet, Amazon owns the IMDb and eBay owns StumbleUpon. Interesting to note that no Microsoft-owned properties appear on the list...

Whilst we're used to seeing the most visited websites in aggregate, it's rare to see them for an individual and I'm tempted to repeat the exercise in 6 months to see how the list has changed.

Anyone else care to share their most visited sites?

Also, I'd be interested in seeing the actual number of visits to each site, which surely must be captured by in order to generate the ranking - anyone know how to expose it?


Anonymous said...

"fabric of folly is a weblog by Dan Taylor, London-based media geek, exploring the intersection between media and technology"

'exploring the intersection between media and technology' - Are u for real? If you get paid (unlikely) for this bullshit then KUDOS, else you are such a KNOBEND. Idiot.

Will said...

If KNOBEND is valid, it's a great Scrabble word.